Zack Greinke wasn't in vintage form during Astros debut, and he found part of the outing 'boring'
The Astros put up 11 runs in Greinke's debut
That's the first time since Sept. 16 of last year that Greinke has walked as many as he struck out in a start. That outing above bumped his 2019 ERA up from 2.90 to 3.08. Hey, subpar starts happen, even to frontliners like Greinke. At age 35 and after parts of 16 seasons in the majors with six different teams, Greinke surely isn't the type to get jitters in a new environment, so, yeah, it's probably one of those things.
What may not have helped, however, is waiting on the Houston offense to make three outs in the home half of each frame. In all, the Astros put 11 runs on the board in this one, and while Greinke was in the game put runs on the board in the second, third, fourth, and fifth innings. Greinke, as it turns out, didn't care for all the down time. Via Matt Kelly of MLB.com, here's what Greinke said about waiting for the Astros' hitters to take their hacks so he can get back on the mound:
"Yeah, it's kind of boring. And just trying to stay loose, staying focused [when] not having anything to do."
Greinke has a longstanding willingness to indulge in candor -- sometimes jarring candor -- and this fits that particular mold. To be fair, Greinke, who's pitching in the American League for the first time since a 2012 stint with the Angels, later praised what his new teammates are capable of on offense:
"I was telling [catcher Martin Maldonado] that it kind of reminds me when I was back in Milwaukee and it seemed like we scored, like, 10 runs a game. It's a good offense, and it's fun to pitch with that going on."
It is indeed a good offense, as the Astros right now rank fourth in the AL in runs scored, second in OPS, third in home runs, and first in walks. Long waits may be a part of Greinke's future, and he'll probably find ways to cope with that boredom.
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