BY: ED COLE
PHOENIX – The season opener between the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies went 4:11 – a D-backs team record for a nine-inning game.
In the end, it was all about the $206 million man, Zack Greinke, and his performance, which was pretty rough. In 4.0 innings, the Rockies tagged Greinke for nine hits (three of them were home runs) and seven runs (all earned), as the Rockies took the opener of the series, 10-5.
Colorado shortstop Trevor Story made history on Monday night, becoming the first player in baseball history with a multi-homer game in his Major League debut on Opening Day. In fact, of the three home runs Greinke gave up on the night, two of them came off Story’s bat.
“He (Greinke) was just up in the zone,” D-backs manager Chip Hale said. “You have to give some credit to their (Rockies) hitters. They’re as good a hitting lineup as you’re gonna see in this league. Obviously, (Trevor) Story really was impressive tonight for opening night. Zack (Greinke) was just up with too many pitches, and they hit them.”
The Rockies jumped all over Greinke in the third inning, scoring six runs on seven hits. The last time he was roughed up that bad in an inning was back on Aug. 6, 2015 against the Philadelphia Phillies. That day, Greinke gave up five runs in the bottom of the first inning.
With Story being a rookie, Greinke didn’t really have a whole lot of film on him to work with in his preparation. On Story’s two home runs, Greinke says he threw him pitches he usually gets hitters out on. It just didn’t work out that way on Monday night.
“The first one was a fastball, maybe a little up, not knowing what he (Story) likes,” Greinke said. “I don’t think I gave up a home run on that pitch all year last year, so we’ll live with that one. It kind of just happens sometimes. His other home run was a pretty good pitch too. Same thing, not perfect, but pretty darn good. 2-0, maybe a ball down, probably right at the knees. It was over the plate though, but 2-0 is a decent pitch, and he hit it pretty far.”
“Occasionally you give up some runs,” Greinke said. “Honestly, I think the first four (runs) were just maybe not perfect pitches, but good hitting, and a break with the (Jorge) De La Rosa hit. After that, hopefully I don’t make pitches like that very often the rest of the year, but sometimes guys will score even if you’re making ok pitches.”
Greinke says he usually gets over one or two bad outings pretty quickly, but if it turns into any more than that, then he says, it’s time to get down to the root of the matter and fix it.
Hale wasn’t happy that he and his team lost, but he kept it in perspective, saying it’s just one game out of 162. Hale says it’s counterproductive to hold team meeting after team meeting after team meeting after a loss. He says it really solves nothing.
“A team that has too many team meetings gets in trouble,” Hale said. “Those guys know. They take care of the clubhouse. We have really good leaders on this team. The goal is always to win the series, so tomorrow is a pivotal game. If we don’t win tomorrow, then we can’t win the series. We have to bear down, and be ready to go.”
These same two teams will square off again on Tuesday evening at Chase Field, with RHP Shelby Miller making his debut for the D-backs. He’ll be opposed by RHP Chad Bettis. First pitch is at 6:40 p.m.