Friday, April 12, 2013
Losing Greinke has Dodgers blue
By ESPN Stats & Information
San Diego Padres slugger Carlos Quentin rushed the mound and wrestled Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Zack Greinke to the ground after getting hit by a pitch Thursday night. A bench-clearing brawl ensued, but in the melee Greinke suffered a fractured collarbone.
This wasn’t the first time Greinke and Quentin have had a run-in.
July 18, 2008: With two on in the bottom of the first, Greinke hit Quentin to load the bases, and the Chicago White Sox went on to score five runs that inning. Quentin then led off the second inning and homered to left field.
April 8, 2009: In their first meeting the next year, Quentin struck out in the bottom of the first, in an at-bat that included a high-and-tight pitch. Greinke then hit Quentin between the shoulders in the fourth inning. Quentin took a step toward the mound before plate umpire Bill Hohn jumped in front of him. Greinke said afterward, "The first at-bat kind of scared me because you never want to do that to anyone. It happens. You hit guys sometimes."
April 9, 2013: In the first game of this series, Dodgers reliever Ronald Belisario hit Quentin with a high and tight fastball, right in the right wrist. Quentin had to leave that game and missed the next one recovering from the bruise.
Greinke is the fourth pitcher to hit Quentin three or more times, and in total 18 pitchers have hit Quentin at least twice in his career.
In fact, getting hit is nothing new for Quentin who led MLB in hit-by-pitch in both 2011 (23, in 118 games) and 2012 (17, in 86 games).
While losing Quentin’s pop at the plate is a big deal for the Padres, the loss of Greinke to the Dodgers’ rotation could have a bigger impact. Greinke signed the fourth-largest total value contract by a pitcher this offseason.
Plus he’s been durable and effective on the mound.
Greinke is one of six pitchers who threw 170+ innings and struck out 170+ batters each year from 2008 to 2012 (CC Sabathia, Tim Lincecum, Cliff Lee, Felix Hernandez, Matt Cain). His FIP (Fielding Independent Pitching), which considers a pitcher's three true outcomes of HR, K and BB) is the third-best in MLB since 2009.
So who will replace Greinke? Here are a few options from the Dodgers 40-man roster.
LHP Ted Lilly: 53 starts for Dodgers since 2010. He threw 90 pitches in Triple-A rehab start on Thursday.
LHP Chris Capuano: 33 starts for Dodgers last season. He replaced Greinke on Thursday.
RHP Stephen Fife: five starts for the Dodgers last season. He started for Triple-A Albuquerque on Wednesday.