Scott Boras told Jim Bowden of ESPN and SiriusXM that Barry Zito is going to throw for various teams on Thursday.
Which, hey, good luck Barry.
Zito sat out all of 2014 following a 2013 season in which he was posted a 5.74 ERA and allowed opposing hitters to hit .314 off of him. In December Boras told people that Zito had worked on his mechanics. Which, OK, we’ll take his word for it.
It doesn’t take a lot to get a team to give a player a minor league deal with an invite to a camp, so sure, we may see Zito pitching in February or early March. But much beyond that would be a surprise.
Last month we learned that Barry Zito was making a comeback after sitting out all of 2014 and now John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle reports that the 36-year-old left-hander will throw for interested teams in January.
Here’s the latest on Zito, via agent Scott Boras:
He’s been working hard on his mechanics. He doesn’t cup the ball anymore. His drive to home plate is a little bit different than it was. He has some new mechanical evolutions he’s been working on to really advance what he thinks will be effective.
Zito was terrible for the Giants in 2013, posting a 5.74 ERA and .314 opponents’ batting average on the way to losing his spot in the rotation. He was a decent back-of-the-rotation starter in 2012, but Zito has basically been a below-average starting pitcher since signing with San Francisco in 2007.
He’ll surely have to take a minor-league contract and prove himself, assuming he impresses enough next month to get some offers.
Scott Boras just made his annual tour of the lobby here at the Winter Meetings. It’s all rather silly, of course. He’s the biggest agent in the game and dozens of reporters crowd around him and hang on his every word. So you’d think that, at some point, he’d just hold an actual press conference where everyone could hear him and people could ask questions in an orderly fashion.
That doesn’t happen, of course. Probably because Major League Baseball doesn’t want to give him some sort of official imprimatur. Probably because he rather likes people crowding around him like he’s a rock star. So, every year, we get Scott Boras strutting around the place, the scrum in hot pursuit.
But maybe the silliest stuff about it is not the overall vibe, but the actual things he says. Things like this, which he said about an hour ago:
That’s not quite to the level of his infamous Oliver Perez/Sandy Koufax comp, but it’s up there.