Zito Won’t Retire, Plans Time Off From Baseball

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) – The Bay Area’s longest-tenured pitcher is taking some time off from Major League Baseball, but isn’t ready to call it a career.

CBS Sports reports that Barry Zito plans to take some time away from the pitcher’s mound, but he isn’t officially retiring.

CBS baseball insider John Heyman reports that there is no evidence that Zito, 36, actually sought a job this off-season. There is no word of any injury for the lefty, who just finished a 5-11season with a 5.74 ERA for the San Francisco Giants, the final year of a seven-season $126 Million deal.

All time, Zito is 165-143 with a 4.02 ERA for his career, all wearing the uniform of either the Giants or A’s. The Giants declined an $18-million option for him in 2014.

His time in San Francisco was viewed largely as a disappointment after being signed to become the face of the franchise as the career of Barry Bonds wound down. His high point came when a strong 2012 postseason helped lead the team to a 2nd World Series title in San Francisco.

The Giants appear to have firmed up their 2014 rotation options this off-season after signing former Zito teammate Tim Hudson and re-signing righty Ryan Vogelsong.

Zito’s best numbers came in Oakland, where he won the American League Cy Young award as the league’s top pitcher in 2002.




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