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Here Comes Zack Greinke

Zack Greinke

Things are going just swimmingly right now for the Dodgers. Yasiel Puig is back and looks to be in great shape. He homered in the Dodger’s 7-4 victory over the Padres on Sunday afternoon. The Dodgers rallied to take the series with the Padres and move to 3 games ahead of the Giants in the NL West.

Clayton Kershaw is scheduled to return on Friday in Miami and rookie Jose De Leon had a very successful debut on Sunday as well. All is right with the world in Dodger land right now. Now the Arizona Dbacks come into town to start a three game set to finish off the home stand on Labor Day. Today will see a marquee pitching match-up as the venerable Zack Greinke comes back to Dodger Stadium to face Kenta Maeda.

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The Dbacks have had a truly miserable season. I know I said at one point earlier in the season that the Dodgers were having a miserable season, but the Dbacks are really having a miserable time this year. I know I get very emotional about the Dodgers sometimes. As I’ve said before, I don’t think Greinke has been as bad as everyone has said. He’s just been a bit below his career averages. There has definitely been a big drop-off from his historically great 2015 season.

Dodgers Lineup vs. Arizona

Zack Greinke-12-4 vs. Kenta Maeda-13-8

Game Time – 5:05 PM – TV-SNLA

Looks like Luis Avilan has rejoined the club

Greinke has still posted a 12-4 record with a 4.17 ERA in 22 starts. His strikeouts are down (114, 7.5/9) but his walk rate (1.9/9) is about the same. He’s allowed 9.3 hits per nine (140 in 136 innings pitched) and I think that’s what’s affected his performance the most. He’s also battled an oblique injury which caused him to miss about a month of the season.

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Greinke has won 9 of his last 10 decisions this season. After going 4-0 with a 1.63 ERA in the month of June, Greinke has struggled in August. He had a 6.43 ERA in the month of August with a 1.5 WHIP. Greinke faced the Dodgers back on June 13 and beat them by allowing two earned runs in seven innings of work. In 5 career starts against the Dodgers Greinke is 3-0 with a 2.53 ERA. Greinke is very hard to beat at Dodger Stadium. He is 29-5 with a 2.00 ERA in 47 career starts at Chavez Ravine.

Greinke vs. Dodgers

Chase Utley 17 16 4 2 0 1 2 1 5 .250 .294 .563 .857 0 0 0 0 0
Carlos Ruiz 16 15 0 0 0 0 0 1 3 .000 .063 .000 .063 0 0 0 0 0
Howie Kendrick 12 12 3 1 0 0 2 0 0 .250 .250 .333 .583 0 0 0 0 1
Yasmani Grandal 11 10 1 1 0 0 0 1 3 .100 .182 .200 .382 0 0 0 0 0
Charlie Culberson 6 6 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Adrian Gonzalez 6 6 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 .167 .167 .167 .333 0 0 0 0 0
Josh Reddick 6 5 1 0 0 0 1 1 1 .200 .333 .200 .533 0 0 0 0 0
Justin Turner 5 5 2 1 0 0 1 0 1 .400 .400 .600 1.000 0 0 0 0 1
Corey Seager 4 3 2 0 0 1 1 1 0 .667 .750 1.667 2.417 0 0 0 0 0
Joc Pederson 3 3 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 .333 .333 .667 1.000 0 0 0 0 0
Bud Norris 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Total 87 82 15 6 0 2 7 5 19 .183 .230 .329 .559 0 0 0 0 2


Kenta Maeda (13-8 3.38) had been on quite a roll winning five consecutive decisions before getting a tough luck loss to the Rockies last week in Denver. Maeda has faced the Dbacks 4 times this year and is 1-1 with two no-decisions. He has a 3.68 ERA with 22 strikeouts against 3 walks against Arizona. The current Dbacks are hitting .322 (19 for 59) against Maeda with an .846 OPS against.

Maeda vs. Dbacks

Paul Goldschmidt 12 11 4 0 0 0 1 1 1 .364 .417 .364 .780 0 0 0 0 0
Jean Segura 12 11 4 1 0 0 0 0 1 .364 .417 .455 .871 0 0 0 1 0
Jake Lamb 11 10 6 3 0 1 3 1 0 .600 .636 1.200 1.836 0 0 0 0 0
Welington Castillo 6 6 3 1 0 0 1 0 1 .500 .500 .667 1.167 0 0 0 0 0
Yasmany Tomas 4 4 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Socrates Brito 3 3 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Archie Bradley 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Patrick Corbin 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Brandon Drury 2 2 1 1 0 0 2 0 0 .500 .500 1.000 1.500 0 0 0 0 0
Zack Godley 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Tuffy Gosewisch 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Chris Owings 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 .000 .000 .000 .000 0 0 0 0 0
Robbie Ray 2 2 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 .500 .500 1.000 1.500 0 0 0 0 0
Total 62 59 19 7 0 1 7 2 11 .322 .355 .492 .846 0 0 0 1 0


The Dodgers are 44-27 at home and their magic number to clinch the NL West is now at 24. The pitching match-ups for the rest of the series will see Shelby Miller against Ross Stripling tomorrow, and Robbie Ray versus Brock Stewart on Wednesday evening. Apparently Julio Urias injured his finger while bunting and he will probably not start until the Miami series. The Dodgers have one last long road trip coming up. There are only 10 home games remaining this season.

Enjoy the game and have a happy Labor Day everyone!

Go Blue!

Scott Andes

Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

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Scott Andes
Scott Andes: Longtime writer and Dodger fanatic

83 thoughts on “Here Comes Zack Greinke

    1. I don’t understand going out of your way for a rental like Reddick.

      Playing Reddick over your own young player sets a bad example to your team.

      Toles deserves the playing time, and it is just a shame to let a hot bat, cool on the bench.

      1. Toles may deserve it, but Reddick has earned it. Toles has 23 hits in the majors. Reddick has 657. I like Toles a lot, but young players have to wait their turns.

        Additionally, the Dodgers have to decide to keep Reddick or not. Toles is already retained. What else don’t we know? We don’t know…

        It’s all subjective…

      2. Greinke would make Puig look silly and I think he’ll make Joc look the same. Soo, Joc ought to sit for Toles. Toles has a smaller K zone and more controlled swing. Reddick actually a pretty smart hitter [bunting for hits] and hit well in his last game, sooo….. I know, I’m on shaky ground here.

        1. LOL tastes alright. Glad he made a liar out a me. 1 out of 3 aint bad. Made him look silly in his 1st at bat. I figured 3 of em.

      1. Joc ‘s swing not conducive to crafty pitchers…his brain either. Just my opinion. Sorry you don’t approve of it. Are you a troll?

  1. Why does he have to earn it in the middle of a penant race in September and Reddick already has earned it? This is the time of year you play the hot players. Spring and June are time to let the “he earned it” card be played.
    We need to put the gints away, not coddle to tradition.

      1. Agree Tim. Put your best players on the field the rest of the way. If Toles hits, he plays. If not, go to Reddick. There are enough at bats in September for both. We need production from all 3 outfield positions. Toles is hot. Play him til he’s not.

  2. 3-4 days ago I would have agreed with “let Toles play” but now Reddick seems to have gotten hot as well. And since he was traded for to provide left handed pop, he will get every opportunity to keep playing unless he goes cold again.

    I would still play Toles in LF, however, a few times a week.

    Meanwhile, Giants managed 2 weak hits in Colorado and got shut out, 6-0! We’re 3.5 up. Magic number down to 23

  3. Wow. I’ve been watching the posts over the past couple of days.

    1 – Some here are counting their chickens before they’re hatched. Guys like Cody Bellinger have 2 games above AA but are already all stars and untouchable. On the basis of 1 big league start in which he gave up 4 runs in 6 innings, DeLeon is already a candidate for the post-season rotation. This year’s 1st round draft choice, who has a few games under his belt in the Rookie League, will be our starting SS in a couple of years. SLOW DOWN EVERYBODY! Big league baseball is hard and most prospects never make it as regulars, let alone as stars.

    2 – Andrew Toles is a nice story – but he’s not yet a major league regular OF. He might be – or maybe not. Reddick has gotten off to a bad start with the Dodgers – as I have written many times, as a Northern Californian (now), I have heard lots about A’s players and Reddick is really streaky. Toles has 61 AB in the Bigs. SMALL SAMPLE SIZE. Guerrero had a great start last year too, remember? And by the way, Toles isn’t ours. He was drafted by Tampa and has less than 1 year in the Dodgers’ system.

    3 – The Braintrust’s method of player acquisition has been called “dumpster diving”. Have they retained Dodgers’ players since they got here? Yeah – Howie Kendrick only when the price dropped way down and he got no other takers due to the qualifying offer, and Brett Anderson when he accepted the QO. I expect them to give both Jansen and Turner QO’s. They will let Jansen go. They may try to resign Turner if the price is low enough, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him go too. The Dodgers may have another cut-rate option at 3B next year, and Lord only knows who will be closing next year.

    4 – Hill is the type of guy that the Braintrust will resign. He’s 37 and injury prone. Book it!

    5 – Puig will be part of next year’s 4 team Dodger blockbuster trade. I predict that Alex Wood or Scott Kazmir or both will be traded away too. Maybe they will get their 3B this way.

    6 – Any guesses on how many starting pitchers the Dodgers use next year?

    7 – When teams went from 3 man rotations to 4 and then from 4 to 5, everyone made the same observation: every game started by your #4 or #5 guy is a game started by a pitcher inferior to your 1, 2 and 3 guys. In the “good old days” when the Dodgers had Kershaw and Greinke, would anyone want to make sure that these 2 studs had fewer starts in favor of the likes of Kazmir and Wood? Me either. The solution to the starting pitching problem is to sign, trade for and develop superior pitchers who have a track record of health. It isn’t going to a 6 man rotation. If 6, why not 7? Why not 12?

    1. Re #7: Roster size limitations. Six starters, six relievers, two catchers, six infielders, five outfielders, equals twenty-five players.

    2. rick, some here get aggravated about things they can’t control and vent, some have fun with what might be but are fully aware of the odds of that playing out, and some poke at the front office with pointed sticks with comments they don’t really believe like the one you made about signing a pitcher just because he is 37 and injury prone.

    3. #1-Sometimes the hope fiends let their imaginations run wild. All these guys have potential but none are sure things, let alone ready for the show.

      #2-Well, the Dodgers rode Guerrero while he was hot. Why not give Toles more chances to show whether he’s a keeper?

      #4-I fear you’re right. Signing a 30-year old to a six year contract is too risky but signing a 37-year old to two years=genius.

      1. Snider exactly and take a look at all three outfielders, and what they have done in the last two weeks.

        One outfielder, hasn’t done much.

  4. Interesting points rick.

    Toles is, at this point in the season, putting up better numbers than Reddick. Play him until that’s no longer true. You mentioned streaky, let’s take advantage of that.

    Why not 12? Well, we’ve started more than that each of the last two years haven’t we. The 300 inning pitcher of yesteryear is the 200 inning pitcher of today and we are staring at the 180 inning pitcher of the future. 30 starts, 180 innings. I’d take 6 of those.

    And yes, we are counting on our prospects. So far, so good. Keep them coming.

  5. Reddick has “earned” his right to be mediocre. I’d like to see more speed and more plays being put on the base paths, because that’s what it will take in the postseason. That’s Dodgers baseball. Playing Toles, Seager, Utley Kendrick and even Pederson in occassion gives us the best scenarios.

    Playing Reddick and Puig gives us two batters, in addition to Grandal, who have a good chance of whiffing on a hit and run or a run and hit. It means more bad habits and “waiting for the big hit”. Mattingly/McGwire style.

  6. Maeda is pitching a real good game.

    The Dbacks hit him pretty hard, the last time he faced them.

    He has had to make a bunch of adjustments this time around.

    1. Bobby
      Vin said Agone’s pitch was a fastball, but I thought it would have to be a off speed pitch, but Vin knows better then me.

    1. Doesn’t matter, FAZ doesn’t like him, he will be traded this winter for a Reddick type player. I say keep him and play him every day.

      1. Never said that. I just said it was stupid to sign him for 6 years and $207 million. I fully expected him to have 2 or 3 good years. But, stupid contracts have a way of biting you sooner than later.

    1. Ha ha Mark. I’ll gladly eat crow on this and have an extra beer for you!

      (For the rest of us realists, let’s just enjoy this one and save it for another game or games. You know the Giant fans are watching the scoreboard too, or maybe they’ve turned off their electronics devices as we prepare to takeoff ….)

  7. While playing on the Dodgers Greinke told several Dodgers they would be easy outs for him. You know the Dodgers enjoy bashing him. While they would love to have him back on the team, the 8 runs and 5 home runs have to feel awesome.

    Chip Hale might have left Greinke in so he wouldn’t have to walk off the mound mid inning. The crowd loved it.

  8. The mercenary now knows there are things more important than money, like being a Dodger. What a hickory stick whipping. He had it coming.

    1. I was hoping we would win and give Greinke a loss but I never expected him to give up FIVE long balls in 4 + innings or even for the whole game. This must be a first time for him and very embarrassing too!!!

  9. And like I said about Maeda above, he is pitching a really good game.

    And this adjustment he has made since last facing the DBacks, is why I think he will pitch even better next year.

  10. His Japanese nickname is MaeKen. I don’t think it means anything but to me it sounds like a giant robot out of an anime or that Pacific Rim movie.

    Maybe we call him the RoboAce. He’s sure been the single constant in our rotation this year. And the Robo part is a veiled FU to the medical experts – I picture him at a bar, flexing in Ichiro’s style Japanese English : “irregularity this … my unbreakable arm cannot be broken …”

    1. As Vin said, he is not a workhorse. However, if he pitches on 6 days rest be is usually very good. From henceforth, I think he should pitch every 6 days. Just change the rotation to do so. Kershaw and others pitch every 5 but put Maeda on 6. That will get him about 160 to 170 innings and he should be an asset.

      No team is going to go to a 6-man rotation, but you can pitch certain pitchers every 6 days.

    2. YF
      Maeda does a special warm up before he pitches, and they call it the MaeKen dance.

      The MLB won’t allow him to do it on the field, before a game.

      I don’t know why it doesn’t make sense to me.

      I would love to see him do it before a game.

      It is on video, so you can look it up.

      1. Yes, I knew that and have seen it even before he became a dodger. Maybe during a World Baseball Classic Game. His Japanese nickname is why they call it the MarKen dance.

    1. Have a few more beers. It makes everything less boring-er, even the 7-9 innings of a 8-1 game. Just don’t go home with a trophy wife (only go home with one when sober, and maybe not even then … Ha ha!)

      1. A few more beers never “helps” anything. I’m surprised you don’t know that.

        And the game is only boring to dback fans.

        Just don’t go home with a trophy wife? What the heck does that mean? Makes no sense. Have you had a few beers?

        Trophy wives are for men with an insecure sense of masculinity. (See the donald) I read that in “The Handbook of Feminist Psychology”.

  11. I like Toles, but it’s still too early to come to any conclusions. Can’t remember his name, but a number of years ago the Dodgers brought a young player up in September, who did nothing but tear the cover off the ball. Left handed hitter if I remember correctly, who it seemed hit nothing but line drives for the entire month. Come the following April he couldn’t buy a hit. Like I said, I can’t recall his name, but I’m guessing someone here does.

    I commented in an earlier thread that I wasn’t in favor of the Dodgers pursuing Greinke. Can’t say that I’ve changed my mind.

    I’m not ready to start thinking about who the Dodgers should sign or trade for in the offseason. Much too early for that. However, I’m trying to figure out why some people have concluded that the Dodgers won’t re-sign Jansen. Maybe they won’t, or maybe they will. What I do know, is that he’s not the only option. Chapman will be available, and so will Melancon. As with Jansen, neither of the latter two will be fettered with draft pick compensation. And for that matter, neither will Rich Hill. I like the Dodgers young pitching, but there is nothing wrong with easing them into the rotation.

    Finally, I can’t understand why anyone would even consider McCarthy as closer material.

    As for Josh Reddick, I’m not ready to throw in the towel on him. I still believe that you’re never as good as you look when you’re at your best, and never as bad as you look when you’re at your worst. In the case of Reddick we’ve only seen his worst. I suspect there’s more in there than we’ve seen.

    1. Good take Brooklyn and I will use two words to tell you why I think he might be a good closer: Dennis Eckersley!

      Failed starter – lights out closer (forget that Gibson thing).

      1. Eck didn’t begin pitching relief as a closer. He was cannon fodder, pitching in long relief and in games that were either already lost or won. After several months, LaRussa discovered that he was so good that he moved him to closer. And you want to award the job to McCarthy without any relevant relief experience? And with his history of health problems and frequent trips to the DL?

        The Braintrust doesn’t believe in spending big $$$ on relievers, so no to Chapman either.

    2. Brooklyn:
      I don’t know about that hitter who flamed out after a great start and who played for us but there was a player named Bob (Hurricane) Hazle who played for the old Milwaukee Braves.
      He came up one year and hit over .400 for a month or so towards the end of the season. He started off slow the next season and was sent down to the minors never to be heard from again.
      His .400 season was in 1957. Three years later he was out of baseball.

  12. Mark, I understand your point about McCarthy. Maybe he could be a decent closer, but I doubt if he could be a lights out closer like Jansen and Chapman.

  13. I mostly agree with those takes Brooklyn.

    McCarthy close? I really doubt it.

    The reason I think FAZ may not sign Jansen is that they will simply be outbid. They have proven themselves to be bargain shoppers.

    Reddick is not a complicated player. He has a history that is not that difficult to read. He’s a career .253 hitter with marginal pop. He was hitting .296 with an .816 OPS at Oakland, both way over career averages. That was in Oakland, where the lights are pretty dim. He’s ok. But frankly I look to find someone considerably better.

    And yes, it is too early to know anything, and with FAZ we won’t know anything until it happens and even then we won’t know because they can undo a happen pretty fast. I read somewhere they’ve made well over 300 roster moves. A Times article, I think it was Mitchell, went through about 25 of the major moves, gave them a grade, and the GPA was 2.44. Not that impressive, but, it isn’t an F. You can get into a State school with a 2.44, if you are an athlete, or go to juco first. I have no idea where this year is headed, but, with the giants failing so miserably it looks like the playoffs. I wonder what the pitching matchups will look like.

    I’m reading an interesting novel by Robert Pisor. End of the Line: the Siege at Khe Sanh. I think I actually saw this guy there. I was running a com line to the COC and the Colonel was explaining to a reporter something about the Special Forces camp at Lang Vei, about a mile from the combat base. As I remember it, the guy at Khe Sanh looked like the man on the jacket of this book. Anyway, it’s a good read. Time to get back to it. Later….

    1. I read that. If I remember correctly, he pulled all the skeletons out of Westmoreland’s closet. Didn’t make LBJ look too good either. Giap was clearly the better general in Viet Nam.

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