They are at their wits end with him, frustrated by years of sub-par peformances and unmet expectations. In San Francisco, watching Zito is a reminder of just how cruel and unforgiving baseball's liberal salary rules for free agents can be.
Yes, the Giants are stuck with Zito, and Zito with the Giants. Over the last five years, fans have slowly migrated from blind support for the former ace to general frustration with him, and have now finally arrived at genuine apathy.
We don't even really care how the Zito situation turns out at this point. We just want it to be over.
When Zito went down with a foot injury in his third 2011 start, no one expected a journeyman pitcher to step in and competently fill his shoes. But that is exactly what Ryan Vogelsong has done. He has shown up, pitched better than anyone rightfully thought he could, and created a legitimate fifth starter controversy in the City by the Bay.
Now, Zito is close to returning from injury. However, in his brief absence it has become clear that the team is ready to move on without him. Vogelsong has not only been a revelation of sorts, but also a story that is incredibly easy to get behind, one that hints at a brighter future.
It is time for San Francisco to move on from the Zito era. Here are seven reasons why Ryan Vogelsong has seized his moment, and created the perfect opportunity for the team to do just that.
To the slides!