In 2012, seemingly out of nowhere, Zito turned the tables, throwing one of the best games of his career in his season start against the Colorado Rockies. When the postseason came around, manager Bruce Bochy rolled the dice, starting Zito in game five against the St. Louis Cardinals and in game one of the World Series against the Detroit Tigers.
The gamble paid off: Zito pitched nearly eight scoreless innings against the Cardinals, pushing the Giants to a series lead. Five days later, he outpitched Tigers ace Justin Verlander, securing a Giants World Series game one win.
#RallyZito trended on Twitter, fans screamed his name at AT&T Park and Zito was reportedly surprised to hear his teammates chanting "Barry" in the clubhouse.
Now, Zito is back in the spotlight with a grown-up sensibility. When not pitching for the Giants, he rallies behind his charity, Strikeout for the Troops, plays guitar with Chris Isaak and Train, and spends time with his new wife, Amber.
"A lot of learning goes on in life," he told reporters at a press conference after his game one win. "The lows can be lows. I've made a lot of adjustments. Sometimes you just have to take your lashings; it's for a reason."
Zito took a break from the World Series to talk to The Huffington Post about his stellar postseason, his celebration plans and why he calls California home.
Describe what it was like pitching in the World Series. The postseason is all about calming your nerves and staying quiet inside. I was able to do that for the most part. The entire playoffs and World Series is a surreal, magical experience.
What did you think about #RallyZito trending on Twitter? I am not big on social media, personally, but really appreciated the response and support from all the fans. They really are the best fans around.
You pitched an unbelievable game against the Cardinals, and another one against the Tigers. Tell me what you did to prepare for those games. We prepare for our games based on process, not results. I prepared adequately for those games and they worked out.
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