- May 13, 1978
- 6' 4"
- 215 lbs
- Major League Debut:
- 7-22-2000 with OAK
- Allstar Selections:
- 2002 CY, 2002 TSN
Best described as "flaky," Barry Zito emerged almost immediately as a fan favorite in Oakland with the Athletics. A guitar-playing left-hander with long brown hair, Zito never had a losing record in his first six seasons in the majors. In the minds of many, he became linked with teammates Tim Hudson and Mark Mulder, who together helped lead the A's to the post-season in each of Zito's first four seasons. In 2002, Zito spun his trademark curveball to win the Cy Young Award with a 23-5 mark and 2.75 ERA.
"Baseball has always been the bread-and-butter of America. People just want to know what's going on." Barry Zito, on why the All-Star Game is more popular in baseball than in other sports
Zito transferred from San Diego's Grossmont High School to University of San Diego High School, a Roman Catholic school where he earned all-league honors with an 8–4 record and 105 strikeouts in 85 innings as a senior. He then attended UC Santa Barbara where he earned Freshman All-America Honors with 123 strikeouts in 85? innings. Transferring to Los Angeles Pierce College, he posted a 2.62 ERA and went 9–2 with 135 strikeouts in 103 innings, and was named to the all-state and all-conference teams. He then transferred to USC, where he was a first-team All-America selection by USA Today Baseball Weekly, Collegiate Baseball, and Baseball America. With a 12–3 record, a 3.28 ERA, and 154 strikeouts in 113? innings, Zito was named Pac-10 Pitcher of the Year. While in college, Zito also played in the Cape Cod League, a summer wooden bat league which showcases the nation's top amateur prospects. He led the Wareham Gatemen to the league championship in 1997, and a runner-up finish in 1998.
For much of his career, Barry Zito wrote the letters "FITZ" under the bill of his cap. The letters stood for "Fearless in the Zone."
In 2008, Barry Zito became the third pitcher to post an 0-6 record in April. Mike Maroth (2003 Tigers) and Dave Stewart (1984 Rangers) were the others.
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- Barry Zito