He said his stuff was a bit nastier back then, and maybe you think that’s false modesty.
Zack Greinke is off to a terrific start for the Dodgers this season and looks to build upon it Monday night against the Washington Nationals.
One thing we’ve learned about Greinke, however, is he’s a straight-shooter regardless of the topic. So when he says his start this year is not quite up to the one that led him to the American League Cy Young award in 2009, it’s best to heed what he says.
This year in six starts, Greinke is 5-0 with a 2.04 ERA, a 1.05 WHIP and 46 strikeouts in 35 1/3 innings.
In 2009 after six starts for the Kansas City Royals, he was 6-0 with a 0.40 ERA, a 0.84 WHIP and 54 strikeouts in 45 innings pitched.
Those are two outstanding starts, though the nod has to go to 2009. Plus, through six games in ’09 he did not allow a single home run; he’s allowed six this season.
Over his next 12 starts five years ago, he went 4-5 with a 3.06 ERA before finishing the season at 16-8 and a 2.16 ERA.
His innings are down due partially to his getting off to a slow start this spring because of a right calf strain. But he’s also going deep into counts and watching his pitch count rise, which can happen when you are striking more people out.
But it’s an interesting beginning for Greinke, who has stepped easily into the ace role with Clayton Kershaw on the disabled list since throwing the opener in Australia. Kershaw is scheduled to return Tuesday.
If not quite up to his 2009 start.
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