Barry Zito will probably become an $18.5 million relief pitcher pretty soon, but he’s set to make a spot start for the Giants next week.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy confirmed today that Zito will return from the disabled list to start the second game of a doubleheader Tuesday against the Cubs, according to Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News.
Zito hasn’t pitched for the Giants since he sprained his right foot on April 16. The 33-year-old has a 2.20 ERA over four minor league rehab starts, including a complete-game two-hitter for Triple-A Fresno on Tuesday.
Zito would probably be a respectable backend starter for several major league teams, but he has little chance of cracking the Giants’ rotation right now. His replacement Ryan Vogelsong has a 1.86 ERA and 57/19 K/BB ratio over 72 2/3 innings this season.
Buster Olney of ESPN reports that the Blue Jays have signed Steve Pearce to a two-year deal worth $12.5 million.
Pearce, 33 had some health issues in 2016, but he hit .288/.374/.492 across 302 plate appearances when he was on the field and he mashes lefties in particular. Pearce is versatile as well, logging time at first base, second base, right field, left field, and DH in 2016 while splitting time between the Rays and Orioles.
Last week Pirates infielder Jung Ho Kang was arrested in South Korea for driving under the influence of alcohol and leaving the scene of an accident. That’s bad, but it turns out that it’s nothing new. The Yonhapnews Agency reports that Kang has been arrested for DUI three times since 2009:
Gangnam Police Station in southern Seoul confirmed that it was Kang’s third DUI arrest, with the three strikes law resulting in the immediate revocation of his license. According to police, Kang had also been arrested for a DUI in August 2009 and May 2011. No personal injuries were reported in either case, though he’d caused property damage in the latter incident.
The report also notes that a companion of Kang initially claimed that he, and not Kang, was behind the wheel at the time of the accident which led to Kang’s arrest last week. It was later revealed by the car’s black box, however, that Kang was driving. So add in some obstruction of justice, whether it is charged or not, to the scene. Police are investigating that.
Between all of this and the fact that Kang is under investigation for an alleged sexual assault in Chicago this past season, a pretty ugly portrait of the Pirates’ infielder is beginning to reveal itself.