Barry Zito's second opening day start as a Giant looked a lot like his first on. Zito struggled through 5 innings giving up 4 runs and 8 hits as the Giants were shut out for the second consecutive opener. Zito was around 83 mph with his fastball and although his curve is a big one, it's so slow that hitters can re-adjust at the plate and still be effective against the pitch. It looks like it's going to be another long season for Zito if he's around 82-83 mph on the fastball without much command. It's not like anybody can be too surprised with the outcome of Monday's game, but I think that Giants fans were expecting a little more life out of this team. The so called "warrior spirit" and "swagger" they supposedly now carry didn't translate to much and the Giants looked identical to last years team, minus Barry Bonds. We also didn't see the youth movement that was promised, as Brian Bocock and Jose Castillo were the only players in their twenties to start yesterday.
Now that the opener has passed, I really hope Bochy gets back to his plan of playing the younger players. After the springs they had, I don't see any reason why Eugenio Velez and Fred Lewis shouldn't be starting. Lewis should get the call in left field tonight, but the Giants appear tentative to let Velez play a defensive position for 9 innings. I know he isn't a very good third basemen, but with Cain and Lincecum (fly-ball/strikeout pitchers) scheduled to go today and tomorrow, I wouldn't mind letting him get his feet wet at third over the next few days. I don't see Velez pushing Durham and his 7.5 million dollar price tag to the bench yet, so if the Giants want their most explosive player in the lineup, they need to find a spot for him. I'm also looking forward to seeing Ort get some action. He struggled this spring but has started swinging well over the last week or so. If I were pushing the buttons, here's how I'd fill out the lineup for the final two in LA:
lf Lewis 3b Velez rf Winn cf Rowand 2b Durham c Molina 1b Ortmeier ss Bocock.
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