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.
Good news in Boston: An MRI on Red Sox outfielder Andrew Benintendi‘s left knee revealed no structural damage.
Benintendi slipped while trying to avoid a tag at second base, injuring his leg, but it appears he’s avoided a serious injury. A timetable for his return isn’t known at this point, but the Red Sox expect to get him back before the end of the season.
Benintendi is hitting .324/.365/.485 with a homer and ten RBI in 21 games.
And then there was one. One player from the 2008 World Series champs, that is. Ryan Howard likely isn’t going anywhere so he’ll be the last one to turn the lights off, but today Carlo Ruiz bid adieu to the Phillies following his trade to Los Angeles.
Lost in all of the emotions the Dodgers are reported to be feeling about A.J. Ellis leaving is the fact that Ruiz was one of the most beloved Phillies players ever, by both his teammates and their fans. Yesterday Roy Halladay penned a heartfelt goodbye to Ruiz, suggesting that he was every bit as essential to his and the Phillies’ success as Ellis has been to Clayton Kershaw (and in pure baseball production, obviously, quite more).
Today Chooch left a message for his now former teammates: