The World Series champions continue their road trip with a short trek north to Miller Park, where they open a three-game series Tuesday night against the Milwaukee Brewers .
Often maligned for underperforming after signing his seven-year, $126 million contract in 2007, Zito (2-0, 0.00 ERA) was a key contributor to the Giants (9-4) winning their second title in three years in 2012.
The left-hander finished third on the team with 15 wins, went 2-0 with a 1.69 ERA in three postseason starts and triggered San Francisco's sweep of Detroit in last year's Fall Classic by outpitching Justin Verlander in Game 1.
Zito's good vibes have carried over with consecutive seven-inning scoreless outings to open 2013 and extend his winning streak to 11, including the postseason. He scattered seven hits and walked one Wednesday when the Giants rolled to a 10-0 victory over Colorado.
"You can't have more confidence out there than what Barry has right now," manager Bruce Bochy said. "It's fun to watch when a pitcher's on and hitting his spots. It's a thing of beauty. He's as tough a competitor as I've ever been around."
Despite his long run of success, Zito appears to measure it on a start-by-start basis.
"It's hard to speak about a stretch or a run or the past, really," said Zito, who hasn't lost since Aug. 2. "Today the boys came out swinging. They were starting to click on all cylinders offensively, which was great because a lot of people underestimate our offense. And days like today really show what we can offer."
Zito, who is 6-0 with a 3.44 ERA in his past 10 road starts, was roughed up in Milwaukee for eight runs - four earned - in three innings of an 8-5 defeat May 23. It's his only appearance versus the Brewers since the start of the 2011 season.
The Giants have won Zito's last 16 starts, a streak last accomplished by the team behind Carl Hubbell from July 17-Sept. 30, 1936.
San Francisco took three of four from the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field, capped with Sunday's 10-7, 10-inning victory as the Giants took advantage of repeated miscues by Cubs pitchers that included five wild pitches in one inning. Hector Sanchez scored the go-ahead run on a balk before Buster Posey and Marco Scutaro added RBI hits.
Milwaukee (3-8) may be hard-pressed to continue its momentum against Zito after barely avoiding a sweep at St. Louis over the weekend. Ryan Braun ended the Brewers' club-record 32-inning scoreless streak with a two-run homer in the seventh and Jonathan Lucroy hit a solo shot in the 10th for a 4-3 win that ended a three-game losing streak.
"It's been a scuffle," manager Ron Roenicke said. "It's been really difficult to get wins thus far. We did a nice job battling back in the eighth and the ninth. That's always a positive."
Braun has had plenty of positives against Zito, going 5 for 14 with three homers, a double and a triple.
Wily Peralta (0-1, 4.50) pitched better in his second start of the season than his first and left without a decision at Wrigley Field last Tuesday after giving up three runs and six hits in 6 2-3 innings of a 6-3 loss.
The right-hander, making his first appearance against San Francisco, is 1-1 with a 2.33 ERA in three career home starts.
|San Francisco Giants|
|April 13, 2013||Angel Pagan||Day-to-Day||Right wrist soreness|
|March 22, 2013||Brett Pill||15-Day DL||Recovery from minor knee surgery|
|March 22, 2013||Brett Pill||15-Day DL||Recovery from minor knee surgery|
|March 22, 2013||Eric Surkamp||15-Day DL||Recovery from left elbow surgery|
|March 22, 2013||Tony Abreu||15-Day DL||Left knee strain|
|April 12, 2013||Alex Gonzalez||Day-to-Day||Left hand contusion|
|April 07, 2013||Jean Segura||Day-to-Day||Left game - bruised left quad|
|April 07, 2013||Chris Narveson||15-Day DL||Sprained middle finger|
|April 06, 2013||Aramis Ramirez||15-Day DL||Left knee sprain|
|April 05, 2013||Ryan Braun||Day-to-Day||Neck spasms|
|March 25, 2013||Mark Rogers||15-Day DL||Right shoulder instability|
MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Barry Zito thought he had his good stuff working. Problem was, the Milwaukee Brewers jumped all over it.
Yuniesky Betancourt hit a grand slam, and Carlos Gomez and Norichika Aoki also homered as the Brewers used an eight-run third inning to beat Zito and the San Francisco Giants 10-8 on Tuesday night.
"Baseball's kind of a strange game," Zito said. "I actually felt better tonight than I did my first two games.
Betancourt's fifth career grand slam highlighted the seven-hit inning that chased Zito, who hadn't lost since last August against the New York Mets . Rickie Weeks doubled home two runs and Jonathan Lucroy added a two-run single as the Brewers sent 12 batters to the plate. Zito faced 11 of them.
"I have to tip my cap to them for hitting my pitches," Zito said. "It was a great streak that mattered most in the playoffs. So, it's something I'll always take great pride in."
Zito pitched 7 2-3 scoreless innings in Game 5 of the NLCS at St. Louis with one walk and six strikeouts in the Giants' 5-0 possible elimination game win. The Giants won all three of his starts in the postseason.
Zito (2-1) had opened the season with consecutive scoreless seven-inning games. He struck out five and walked two in 2 2-3 innings and his 0.00 ERA ballooned to 4.86 ERA. Dating to last season, the Giants had won the previous 13 regular-season games started by Zito.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy thought that Zito threw the ball well, despite the loss.
"A changeup up for a grand slam was the difference in the game," he said. "It was tremendous what he did on that streak he was on."
Gomez's home run off the foul pole in left snapped Zito's scoreless streak to start the season at 15 2-3 innings. Zito is 0-5 in eight starts at Miller Park and has never lasted more than 5 2-3 innings.
Jim Henderson pitched the ninth for his second save, but gave up a run to Brandon Belt , who went 3 for 4.
Brandon Kintzler (2-0) got the win in relief for the Brewers.
Brewers manager Ron Roenicke was glad that his offense has shown some life the last two games after struggling for so long.
"It sure was nice to see us scoring all those runs," he said. "Another big inning. That seems to be us. We seem to be big innings and not consistent through a game, but I'll certainly take that."
The Brewers snapped a 32-inning scoreless streak in Sunday's 4-3 win against the St. Louis Cardinals in 10 innings.
Wily Peralta started for Milwaukee and gave up three runs, two earned, in the third inning, and then left in the fifth with bases loaded and nobody out. He went four innings, allowed six runs, five earned, on seven hits with three walks and a strikeout in his first career start against the Giants.
In the third, Angel Pagan had an RBI single and Pablo Sandoval 's double knocked in Pagan and Marco Scutaro , who had reached on third baseman Alex Gonzalez 's throwing error.
In the fifth, Peralta, who the Brewers are counting on to be a reliable third starter, gave up Sandoval's run-scoring single and then left the bases loaded and no outs for Mike Fiers . He got the first out, but then allowed Belt's sacrifice fly. Gregor Blanco lined out to right to end the threat.
Roenicke thought that Peralta's power pitching disappeared.
"He lost velocity in the fourth inning. He lost velocity in the fifth inning," Roenicke said. "He gets out of rhythm. He starts aiming the ball. The fastball doesn't have the same life on it."
Trying to protect a three-run lead, Fiers left the bases loaded with one out in the sixth. Kintzler came on and gave up a sacrifice fly to Sandoval, but then struck out Buster Posey to end the top of the sixth.
Brandon Crawford hit his second home run of the season, a solo shot, in the fourth.
NOTES: The Giants are going to call up right-hander Jean Machi from Triple-A Fresno on Wednesday. LHP Jeremy Affeldt is going on the 15-day disabled list with a right oblique strain. ... Brewers pitcher Yovani Gallardo was arrested on a drunken-driving charge Tuesday after authorities said he was driving on a city highway with a blood-alcohol content nearly three times the legal limit. He pitches Thursday in the final of the three-game series with the Giants. ... The Giants and Brewers held a moment of silence for the victims of the tragedy at the Boston Marathon. ... Giants and Brewers players, managers and coaches wore uniform No. 42 in honor of Jackie Robinson . ... Ryan Braun struck out four times. ... The Brewers improved to 2-5 at home. The other win came on opening say when they beat the Colorado Rockies 5-4 in 10 innings.