From MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan :
The Rangers have been told that Barry Zito is signing elsewhere.
One source said that the Rangers expect Zito to sign with the San Francisco Giants. The Rangers offered Zito a six-year, $84 million contract. They also added a vesting option for $15 million for a seventh year with a $4 million buyout. The option would have kicked in if Zito pitched 200 innings in the sixth year of the contract. But apparently it wasn’t enough to lure Zito to Texas.
If Sullivan’s source is correct, the NY Post’s Joel Sherman comes off looking rather prophetic, having described the Giants as the “front-runner” for Zito’s services earlier today.
The Houston Chronicle’s Richard Justice mentions the possibility of Paul Wilson signing with the Astro, and while I’m not usually given to Generation K nostalgia, perhaps the Mets will extend a spring training invite to Bill Pulispher. He’s a cheaper lefty than Barry Zito and he already knows his way to the ballpark.
Beyond that, I’m stunned by the possibility the most glittering prize left on the free agent market might end up with someone besides the two New York clubs. I knew it was bad idea for Omar to stress Flushing’s strong Caucasian-American community ties —- as Carlos Delgado could’ve told us, that kind of thing just smacks of pandering.