By Cuyler Meade
It’s only April, but at least one baseball insider has reason to be concerned about a struggling Arizona Diamondback, and it might be deeper than just a few poor starts.
Zack Greinke doesn’t look right, and according to ESPN Insider Pedro Gomez, it might go beyond struggling with his change up.
Is Greinke not healthy?
“Exactly,” Gomez told Sports360AZ.com’s Brad Cesmat during his weekly visit Wednesday morning. “I’ve heard a little here and there, and it’s not surprising that the club doesn’t talk about it, but it’s something that, look, this is not Zack Greinke. This is not the Zack Greinke who has performed over the last few years at a high All-Star level.
“He may be trying to push through some things,” Gomez explained.
He wasn’t buying the excuse that Greinke’s seven-earned-run outing against St. Louis on Monday should be taken with a grain of salt, considering how well the Cardinals have been hitting.
“He has faced darn good teams throughout his career,” Gomez said, “and not looked like that.”
Greinke finally looked closer to right last week against the Giants, when he gave up just one earned run and struck out seven over six and two-thirds innings, but then he came right back Monday and gave up a stinker.
Gomez thinks something might be wrong.
“We’re looking now four or five starts into the season, and this is not the Zack Greinke that we have seen over the last few years,” Gomez said. “I don’t know if something is going on, but it just does not look like the Zack Greinke who we’ve seen, in terms of pinpoint precision when he’s pitching. In terms of just putting it on a dime wherever he wants.
“He’s leaving pitches up in the zone, and that’s alarming. If you did it once or twice, hey that happens, but we’re almost in May now, and it hasn’t been rectified.”
Gomez said the ability to fix problems has long been one of Greinke’s greatest strengths.
“That’s something that he’s always been great at,” Gomez said. “He’s been able to rectify things from start to start, even from inning to inning, throughout his career.
And that’s not happening right now, and it leads you to believe that there may be something else going on with Zack Greinke.”
So what’s wrong?
“It may not necessarily be something physical, like with a muscle or anything like that, but there may be something going on, because he’s just not looking like the Zack Greinke we’ve seen,” Gomez said. “I’ve talked to a couple of scouts, and they said he just doesn’t look the same. He doesn’t look right.”
Greinke’s next start is Saturday against Colorado.