Barry Zito tries to continue his hot start to the season this evening when the San Francisco Giants resume a three-game set with the Miami Marlins at AT&T Park.
Zito has been terrific in four starts this season, surrendering two runs or less in each outing, but has received a no-decision in each of his three starts since a four-hit shutout in his first appearance of the season.
The 2002 AL Cy Young winner hasn't pitched since last Wednesday in Cincinnati when he allowed a run and five hits in six innings of a 4-2 loss. It was the first time the Giants had lost one of his starts this season.
Zito, who has never faced the Marlins, will be opposed tonight by volatile right-hander Carlos Zambrano, who is still searching for his first win with his new ballclub.
Zambrano lost his second straight start on Friday against Arizona, despite a decent effort that saw him allow three runs and 10 hits in six innings. He had allowed just a run in each of his first three starts, but is 0-2 on the year with a 3.24 ERA.
The big hurler could get himself untracked tonight, as he is 5-1 lifetime against the Giants with a 2.62 ERA in 12 starts. He's also pitched to a 0.86 ERA in four outings versus the Giants since 2009.
Miami won for only the second time in 10 tries in Tuesday's opener, as Giancarlo Stanton clubbed a solo home run and Ricky Nolasco remained unbeaten on the year to help the Marlins get past the Giants, 2-1.
Nolasco (3-0) gave up a home run to Pablo Sandoval among seven hits over 7 1/3 innings. He was removed from the game after intentionally walking Sandoval to load the bases in the eighth. Edward Mujica was summoned from the bullpen and induced an inning-ending double play by Buster Posey.
"We're not executing. We're not quite getting it done," said Giants manager Bruce Bochy.
Heath Bell tossed a 1-2-3 ninth to record his third save of the season.
The Giants' Matt Cain (1-2) pitched well in defeat, scattering six hits over eight frames.
"He's one of the best right-handers in the game," Nolasco said of Cain. "For us to score some runs and beat him is a big plus."
San Francisco is 2-2 so far on its nine-game homestand.
Miami was 4-2 last season versus the Giants.