Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Scouting Report: Nationals at Giants (5/13)

I kinda like it when they're on the west coast, because I start watching, they're winning, it seems like they're almost surely going to win, then I fall asleep feelin' good, and yeah, at some point the next day I realize they blew it again, but it kinda feels like it happened a long time ago by the point, and still I got the enjoyment of going to bed a winner.

Here's my look at the Giants' game three starter and prediction. You can check out my preview of the series here for breakdowns on their hitters and bullpen.

On the Mound
Barry Zito: Everyone who boo-ed the Lerners for not breaking the bank on free agents, behold Barry Zito.

Actually, the lefty's off to a pretty good start this year (nothing to justify that contract, but Giants fans are long past hoping for that). His velocity is up a couple miles per hour, and his command, which really slipped last year up to a Cabrera-esque 5.10 walks per 9, is back in a safe zone at 3.06.

He's known for his slow, looping curveball, but it's not what it used to be. He throws a two- and four-seam fastball, slider, and change. He's a flyball pitcher and doesn't strike anyone out. Eric Seidman recently noted that Zito has shown an ability to generate an unusually high number of infield flies when he's pitching at his best.

Fearless Prediction
Season record: 20-11
Nationals avoid the sweep, 6-4.

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