Jesse Chavez‘s season-ending rib injury convinced the A’s they needed some extra pitching help down the stretch and they’ve called up 37-year-old left-hander Barry Zito for his first big-league action since 2013.
Zito came out of retirement in an attempt to make the A’s out of spring training, but failed to grab a spot on the pitching staff and spent all season in the rotation at Triple-A Nashville.
He wasn’t particularly good at Triple-A, posting a 3.46 ERA and 91/60 K/BB ratio in 138 innings, and when rosters expanded for September the A’s said they had no plans to call up the 37-year-old former Cy Young winner.
Chavez’s injury opens up a spot for Zito and with the A’s in last place this at least gives fans a little something to be interested in. Zito spent the first seven seasons of his career in Oakland, making three All-Star teams and winning one Cy Young award while going 102-63 with a 3.55 ERA in 222 starts. He left as a free agent following the 2006 season, signing a massive, ill-fated long-term deal with the Giants.