The Giants officially declined their $18.0 million option on lefthander Barry Zito and will instead pay him the $7 million buyout.
This comes as no surprise to anyone the least of whom is Zito himself, who took out a full page ad three weeks ago to thank San Francisco Giants fans.
This brings to an end the seven year relationship with the Giants who signed him to deal worth $126 million dollars before the 2007 season. At the time, and for many years after, it was the largest sum ever paid for a pitcher.
Zito, now 35, ends his Giants tenure with a 63-80 record and a 4.62 ERA. Given that he’s a southpaw, there may be one or two teams interested in his services and he could end up getting a one year deal for $2-4 million dollars. Hopefully, it’s not the Mets as in my opinion he wouldn’t even make a good LOOGY.
Last season, Zito went 5-11 with a 5.74 ERA while making 25 starts and five relief appearances after he was yanked from the starting rotation in August.
Incidentally, the Giants also parted ways with center fielder (and leadoff hitter?) Andres Torres… Anyone up for a Mets reunion? I kid, I kid… 🙂