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  1. #1
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    Will The Real Zack Greinke Please Stand Up

    ...please stand up, please stand up.

    Is this guy for real? ZG has consistently pitched very well since he arrived in Dodgerland. By some more traditional measures he may even be as good as he was in that one magical season that won him a Cy Young in KC.

    When we signed Greinke, however, I was quite skeptical that he could live up to his hype and, as good as he was last year, my skepticism has followed into this season. IMO, Greinke has always been far closer to a notch above Billingsley than he is a notch below Kershaw: a great number two starter, but not the elite ace everyone seemed to be expecting.

    Largely, my concerns have centered around the fact that he's never come close to duplicating his Cy Young season. Additionally, his K rates had declined each year over the last 3 seasons in conjunction with a once dominant slider that had declined in both movement and usage.

    Even this year, with an ERA of 2.04, nearly 12 strikeouts per nine, and a strikeout to walk ratio of 7.67/1 I still see room for improvement. My primary question at this point - While ZG has been dominant on the hill, is he actually staying on the hill long enough? In the absence of our ace, ZG should be eating innings and helping to preserve our bullpen, yet he's averaging less than 6 innings per start which is pretty close to league average. Being so dominant this year, shouldn't we be squeezing at least a couple more outs per game out of him?

    It may seem that I'm nitpicking, but do you expect to see this ZG for the remainder of 2014? Would you be happier with slightly less flashy stats and more innings per start?
    "There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.

    - Carl Sagan


  2. #2
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    A couple articles on Greinke's pitch usage. The first is specifically about the slider

    http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/s...itchers-042114

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/zack-...on-curveballs/

  3. #3
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    From 2011-2013 Greinke is 13th in the majors in fWAR and 21st in RA-9 WAR.
    *http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.asp...ers=0&sort=6,d

    If a top 20 starting pitcher isn't good enough for you, I don't know what to say

  4. #4
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    I don't agree with this thread. He shouldn't have to go 7-8 innings with our bullpen. That was supposed to be our strength with how many dominant arms we have on the roster. He has been on a tear and is undefeated this season with that huge strikeout rate you mentioned. Maybe if he got more ground balls or pop flies for outs to preserve his pitch count instead of striking out everybody you would be happy. Lol. Just don't see how you can be dissatisfied with his performance or see it lacking to the point where he deserves criticism for it but toeach his own. He will be in the cy young discussion for sure if he continues this. He may even win.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by filihok View Post
    A couple articles on Greinke's pitch usage. The first is specifically about the slider

    http://msn.foxsports.com/mlb/story/s...itchers-042114

    http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/zack-...on-curveballs/
    This was awesome... and totally relevant to the conversation. But then you do this...

    Quote Originally Posted by filihok View Post
    From 2011-2013 Greinke is 13th in the majors in fWAR and 21st in RA-9 WAR.
    *http://www.fangraphs.com/leaders.asp...ers=0&sort=6,d

    If a top 20 starting pitcher isn't good enough for you, I don't know what to say
    Nobody said ZG wasn't good enough. I said myself that he's been nearly as good as he was in his Cy Young year.

    I think ZG has been great, but only for the purpose of throwing it in your face, I'll ask - would you give 20m over 7 years to a top 20 pitcher?

    In fact, I'm pretty sure that just a short time ago I made the comparison between ZG and Billingsley and YOU provided stats that backed it up.

    No sure how this turned into an argument of Greinke 'not being good enough', the questions was, "should we be expecting more innings out of our current ace?"

    How does that imply that he's not good enough me? If I implied anything it was that I'd rather see him get deeper into games than to pitch like a Cy Young winner for less than 6.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by D Blue987 View Post
    I don't agree with this thread. He shouldn't have to go 7-8 innings with our bullpen. That was supposed to be our strength with how many dominant arms we have on the roster. He has been on a tear and is undefeated this season with that huge strikeout rate you mentioned. Maybe if he got more ground balls or pop flies for outs to preserve his pitch count instead of striking out everybody you would be happy. Lol. Just don't see how you can be dissatisfied with his performance or see it lacking to the point where he deserves criticism for it but toeach his own. He will be in the cy young discussion for sure if he continues this. He may even win.


    Not sure how you can disagree with the thread? I didn't even make an argument, the thread simply asked a question. A question which I led up to in what I thought was a very even handed manner.

    I made two factual arguments (1) ZG is pitching at an elite level, however, (2) ZG is not pitching deeper into games than an average pitcher. The very basis for this thread is to hold a discussion as to whether other posters are OK with this relationship or if they'd rather see something in the middle.

    In fact, I didn't even give my opinion on that topic, but now that you mention it, we couldn't be further apart on the role of an ace and his relationship with the bullpen.

    Your argument implies that you're ok with asking your BP to throw 3+ innings every single game. Asking 7 releivers to throw a minimum of 3.1 innings a game, if the innings were distributed evenly, means each reliever would have to throw a minimum of 70+ innings a year. I don't know about you, but I don't want to see Wright or League throwing 70+ innings a year and I certainly don't want Kenley Jansen to HAVE to throw more than that.

    ZG is a very cerebral pitcher. One of the brightest in baseball actually. While your "lol" is cute, pitching to contact is absolutely a viable strategy when you trust your stuff. Greinke himself did it quite effectively last year. In fact, some of the greatest pitchers in baseball history have been known to dial it down a bit in blow outs or otherwise less meaningful games with the intention of preserving the pen.

    If you think I'm being too critical, then lets compare him to himself. Last year he averaged 6.3 innings per start with a 2.63 era and 7.5 k's per 9. This year he's averaging 5.85 innings per start with a 2.04 and 12 k's per nine.

    While the latter data set is more impressive, there is certainly an argument to be made that he was equally effective while being far more efficient in 2013.

    Thus, the entire point of this thread.
    Last edited by GibbyIsMyHero; 05-03-2014 at 05:38 PM.

  7. #7
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    I think Greinke has been/will continue to be great, his innings may obviously have to do with his high K numbers, which will most definitely go down, thus his pitches slightly going down (more than likely). Another point that did come up was how we're supposed to have a great bullpen, so his innings may not be quite as important as other teams, but if he wants to be a Cy Young contender he may need to stretch out, which I think he will anyways.


  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by LASportsFan1996 View Post
    I think Greinke has been/will continue to be great, his innings may obviously have to do with his high K numbers, which will most definitely go down, thus his pitches slightly going down (more than likely). Another point that did come up was how we're supposed to have a great bullpen, so his innings may not be quite as important as other teams, but if he wants to be a Cy Young contender he may need to stretch out, which I think he will anyways.
    Funny, I remember you being super excited about the deal and me trying to temper expectations. I couldn't be happier than to say now that I was wrong on that subject.

    I agree that's likely what will happen. I think his k rate will start to dip and he'll start to get out of innings more efficiently, ultimately pitching further into games.

    Are we really seeing the reincarnation of Cy Young Greinke though? That first article filikok posted gives me hope that we are.

  9. #9
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    The lower ERA will probably because of pitching in the NL and DS.

    One thing I did notice is that he's stranding runners at a very high rate. His LOB% over the past two years has been 80% and 98% (lol). He only had one year in KC with a LOB% over 80%, and most of the time was around 70%.

    His BABIP is lower than his career average as well, but not by too much. He has talked about his pitches, so maybe it's just he has really mastered what he throws, and he's seeing the results.

  10. #10
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    When Kershaw comes back and ryu is healthy
    Kershaw
    Greinke
    Ryu
    Haren
    Beckett


    Your baby can't do this

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by DodgerB24 View Post
    The lower ERA will probably because of pitching in the NL and DS.

    One thing I did notice is that he's stranding runners at a very high rate. His LOB% over the past two years has been 80% and 98% (lol). He only had one year in KC with a LOB% over 80%, and most of the time was around 70%.

    His BABIP is lower than his career average as well, but not by too much. He has talked about his pitches, so maybe it's just he has really mastered what he throws, and he's seeing the results.
    That's insane.

    Obviously there's very little likelihood that he can sustain 98%, but that's a pretty damn impressive number even if only temporary.

    Obviously I'd like to see the guy sustain his current dominance, just not sure he can keep such impressive k numbers while trying to pitch deeper into games.

    He currently ranks in the 70's in innings per start while in the 20's in pitches per start. That tells me there's room for a little more efficiency.

    http://www.baseball-reference.com/le...pitching.shtml

    We need our starters to get deeper right now. Bullpen is getting taxed and we just threw 2 AAA starters in the last week.

    Can't wait for Clay on Tuesday. If ZG can find a decent balance, these two will eat a lot of innings from here on.

    On a side note, we're getting 6.2 inn per startout of Haren. I knew he'd be a good pickup, but I did not expect this.
    "There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.

    - Carl Sagan


  12. #12
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    Greinke continuing to perform the way he has pretty much from day one as a Dodger is probably the least of my concerns. He has been one of the most consistent and reliable assets on this team over the last year plus.
    Instead of wondering when the producers will stop producing, I'd like to know when we're going to get some production out of some very highly paid outfielders, not named Puig. Oh yeah, and I'd like a catcher too at some point.

  13. #13
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    I'm not worried, that's how he is.

    This is how we do it! I still believe



  14. #14
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    He is probably the most underrated SP in the league. He's def a Top 10 SP:

    Kershaw
    Darvish
    Wainwright
    Hernandez
    Scherzer
    Fernandez
    Lee
    Strasburg
    Verlander
    Greinke

    Heck id even put him ahead at #7

    LAKERS
    PACKERS
    DODGERS
    FC BARCELONA
    USC TROJANS

  15. #15
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    ^ Can't argue with that list.

    I forgot to mention earlier that he struggles with anxiety issuers in his first few years of his career. So much so that he almost quit I believe.

    There's no doubt that his struggle with that hurt his performance.

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