Former Giants pitcher Barry Zito made a surprising admission in his new memoir, “Curveball”: He rooted against the 2010 Giants in the World Series after he was left off the playoff roster.
“I rooted against the team because my ego was in full control and if we lost then I could get out of there,” Zito said, via the Chronicle. “It would a) prove they couldn’t do it without me, and b) take me out of the situation because I was so miserable coming to the field every day.”
The revelation is one that will certainly turn the heads of some Giants fans. Count Mike Krukow among that group. The broadcaster was heavily critical of Zito’s decision to share that anecdote when he joined “Murph & Mac” on Tuesday morning.
“Well, I do believe it’s human nature,” Kruk said of Zito rooting against his team. “If you’re eight years old. I just think that’s a story he was better off keeping to himself.
“I went through a similar thing in 1989, where I was injured and I watched the team that I was on go all the way the World Series, and I couldn’t help them. And you don’t feel a part of it. But you know what? These are your teammates, these are guys that were diving into walls for you when you were pitching. These are guys that were right there for you. How can you root against them?
“I don’t care how butt hurt you are, you get out there and you root for your team. And I think that’s what is being ignored here.
“I like Zito. You cannot not like him, he’s such a likable guy, but I don’t see what was the merit of even saying that. Even if you felt that for one inning because your feelings were hurt. I don’t understand, I don’t get it. I mean, that’s something you need to just kind of keep to yourself. It just makes no sense to me. And, and quite honestly, I was surprised by it.”
Does Zito deserve credit for his honesty?
“Brett Butler (was honest) when he said I always wanted to be a Dodger, and how’d that work out? Giants fans don’t forget this. You know what, they’re not going to forget what he said.
“It’s not going to help him out. For a guy who, you know, one thing about Zito, he has the type of personality where he has to be loved. He does. He has to be loved. He feeds on that. He has to be a guy that everybody likes. He’s an entertainer and even that part of his life now — that has a lot to do with people liking who you are and what you do.
“This is something that is not going to help him as he goes forward. It’s not going to help him. Giants fans are not going to get off this, and I just think that is a mistake. And I wish I would have not heard the story. I saw the headline this morning. I go, ‘No way.’ I read the article and I was shaking my head. I said, ‘Why?’
Listen to the full interview below. To hear Kruk on Zito, start from 13:00.