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818-game-thread-who-is-6-15-573-era-and-makes-18-million-a-year | August | 2008 Articles

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8/18 Game Thread: Who is 6-15, 5.73 ERA, and Makes $18 Million a Year?

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Our opponent this afternoon, that's who: Barry Zito, who will soon eclipse soon-to-be-free-agent Mike Hampton as owner of the undisputed Worst Contract In Baseball. (Hampton and his 6.92 ERA have a firm hold on that title for now.) Zito was merely mediocre last year, a slightly-worse-than-league-average 4.53 ERA in his first year in a Giants uniform. This year, his walk rate ballooned and he has managed a Horacio Ramirezian 83/80 K/BB ratio, so while he has given up half as many homers as he did last year he's had no trouble at all in going from a #3/#4 starter to a fringe #6. After Tim Lincecum, this guy's fastball will look like an all-you-can-eat buffet. (At least, that's the way it looks to every other team in baseball. With us, you just never can tell.) Jorge Campillo starts for us, and he's looking to extend his own brilliant rookie year. If not for Jair Jurrjens, or Campillo's pedestrian 7-5 W-L record, he'd get and deserve serious consideration for Rookie of the Year; as it is, he has quietly been one of the best starters in the division. I've gone into his repertoire before; the other shoe still hasn't dropped. He has never faced the Giants, and considering that he's an extreme junkballer, that should be to his advantage. (The only member of their lineup who has ever seen him is Dave Roberts, who went 0-1 against him back in 2005.) I sure do wish we could salvage a split. Today's game would seem to provide a can't-miss opportunity to do just that. Is there any way we can mess it up? Do you even have to ask?
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