Big League Stew - MLB

It's been awhile since we visited with the many "Wow, I just got rocked!" faces of Barry Zito, so let's peek back in and take a look at how he's doing ...

Yup, Zito's still looking a bit stressed. I swear those are all new photos and I will contend that whoever serves as the AP photographer in San Francisco must have a wicked bent toward taking such pics.

Anyway, as you might have read in DB's fantastic Juice this morning, Zito had himself another humdinger of an outing on Wednesday night and the sixth inning in particular. 

From the SF Chronicle:

Speaking of undistinguished performances, Barry Zito (6-15) had another bummer of an outing, failing to get out of the sixth inning after facing nine batters. Billy Sadler finished the job but not without further sloppiness, plunking consecutive batters with the bases loaded.

The Astros scored six runs in the sixth - two on bases-loaded walks, two on bases-loaded sacrifice flies and two on bases-loaded hit batsmen. Three Astros were plunked in the inning, tying a modern-day major-league record for ouchies.

Earlier in the game, Bengie Molina was hit by a pitch for the third time in three games here, but afterward called it a fluke, saying, "I don't think they have a reason to throw at me, so I'm not sweating that. I think they're trying to pitch me in, and the ball got away."

Zito said he didn't mind his bases-loaded walk to Lance Berkman (who hit a grand slam Tuesday) but did regret walking Mark Loretta, the inning's second batter, and hitting Humberto Quintero, which preceded a bases-loaded walk to pitcher Randy Wolf, Zito's final batter.

Zito's numbers now stand at 6-15, 5.73 ERA, 1.74 WHIP, 83 Ks, five years remaining on the contract after this one. (Repeat: Five years.) Incredible, really.

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