Anyone familiar with Zack Greinke knows that he has not received many opportunities to pitch in the postseason, especially since he played for the Kansas City Royals a majority of his career. However, the couple chances Greinke has got to shine in the playoffs has not been what many expected. The National League Championship Series is a great opportunity for Greinke to put the postseason woes behind him.
It is no secret that one of the main reasons the Milwaukee Brewers acquired Greinke in 2011 was to help propel the team to their first division title in 29 years. The Brewers also hoped that Greinke would excel in the playoffs and help them clinch their second World Series berth in franchise history. Unfortunately, the right-hander faltered when it mattered most.
The Los Angeles Dodgers signed Greinke to a $147 million contract prior to the 2013 MLB season. Obviously, their hopes of getting to the World Series were a huge reason why they agreed to the massive deal. Once again, the postseason fears got to Greinke as he disappointed in Game 2 of the NLDS.
Including the current postseason, Greinke is 1-2 with a 5.56 earned run average and 16 strikeouts in 22 2/3 innings. He also has surrendered four home runs and walked four in four starts.
There is no question Greinke is a phenomenal starting pitcher who is capable of great performances. It is just unfortunate that not of that has yet to transition over to the playoffs. The good news is 29-year-old will not only have the opportunity to show everyone he can play well in the postseason, but more importantly, he has a chance to prove to himself that he can help lead a team to the World Series.
Greinke is expected to start Game 1 of the NLCS.