Giants 5, Padres 0: Seven more zeros from Barry Zito, plus a slump Buster

San Francisco Giants' Barry Zito works against the San Diego Padres in the first inning of a baseball game, Sunday, April 21, 2013, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

San Francisco Giants’ Barry Zito works against the San Diego Padres in the first inning of a baseball game, Sunday, April 21, 2013, in San Francisco. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)

Seven innings, zero runs. Sound familiar?

Well, of course, that’s what Barry Zito did in his first start this season at AT&T Park.

And in his second.

And in his third.

You know how they post Ks on the right-field wall at AT&T Park for strikeouts by Giants pitchers. Well, maybe when Barry Zito pitches at AT&T, they should post zeros instead.

Zito improved his string of scoreless innings at home to 21 innings this season with another shutdown performance Sunday in a win over the Padres.

It is also the 10th consecutive Barry Zito start at AT&T Park that the Giants have won, dating back to last postseason and regular season.

Sunday’s outing dropped Zito’s season ERA to 3.42, and it was the second win this season by the Giants that didn’t require a save or a walk-off hit. The other game also was a Zito start.

Who would have thought the day when Zito starts is the day the bullpen gets some rest?

And there was some more good news for the Giants. Buster Posey smacked his first home run since Game 4 of last year’s World Series — and that includes all of spring training — when smacked a two-run shot to left in the fifth inning. It was also the Giants’ first home run this season not hit by a guy named Pence (4), Sandoval (3) or Crawford (3).

OTHER NOTES

  • Chad Gaudin pitched the final two innings without giving up a run to lower his ERA to 0.73.
  • It was the Giants’ major league-leading fifth shutout win of the season. Three of those wins were games started by Zito.
  • It was the Giants’ second consecutive three-game sweep at home.
  • The win improved the Giants’ record against NL West foes to 8-1. They’ve won eight in a row since losing the season-opener to the Dodgers.
  • Because of his ugly outing in Milwaukee, Zito is averaging just under 6 innings per start this season. At that pace, he would pitch 189.1 innings if he makes 32 starts. Important to note because his $18 million option for 2014 kicks in if he pitches 200 innings this season.

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