In his next three starts, all no-decisions, Zito allowed five runs over 23 innings. Then he gave up five runs in five innings of Oakland's 10-6 victory over the Cincinnati Reds last week. "You might not be able to see it yet," Joe says, "but Barry is pitching right now with the same degree of focus as he was in the Cy Young year."
"I'm going to be fine," Barry Zito insists, stepping out onto his apartment balcony, staring straight at Alcatraz Island under a cloudless evening sky. "I really believe I will." As if there's any other opinion that matters.