How much would you pay a pitcher with a 36-11 career record? When you send Barry Zito out to face a division rival, that's exactly what you get. Zito's first two starts of the season put an exclamation point on the extremes that are Barry, but against the AL West, Zito is certainly consistent: consistently great. Zito sounded like he was really on his game tonight. (That's right, sounded. Comcast really does suck. OK, now I'm officially over it. I'll shut up. And switch to digital.)
In case you missed it, the A's set a franchise record tonight (as the Mariners fell to 7-12 on days dedicated to celebrating Dan Wilson's career). Never before have the Oakland A's given up only three hits over two consecutive games. With 20 consecutive scoreless innings, A's pitchers are still barely halfway to the team record, but then again, the pitching staff doesn't have Gorman Heimueller, Chris Codiroli, Bill Krueger, or Mike Warren anymore.
In a season's first week, you can't draw any conclusions about the season as a whole, but you can have fun looking at the "early trends". A good one is Joe Kennedy, who retired Ichiro tonight after coming in to get Giambi in his last outing. Another good one is that the A's appear to have left their defensive sloppiness in Arizona. A bad one is Dan Johnson, whose bat looks slow through the zone and who must feel like he's 0/50. Hang in there, DJ; this too shall pass.
Finally, Chris Shelton is hitting .688 and slugging about 5.000, while Joe Blanton has 8 shutout innings on 2 hits, and Gustavo Chacin was solid in his debut. Willie McGee, you retired too soon.