Diamondbacks pitcher Zack Greinke describes his night, in which he nearly threw a no-hitter against the Pirates.
1 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo reacts to Zack Greinke’s near-no-hit performance in Thursday’s win over the Pirates.
2 of 41
Manager Torey Lovullo, right-hander Zack Godley and shortstop Nick Ahmed react to the 7-1 win.
3 of 41
Manager Torey Lovullo and left-hander Robbie Ray react to the 7-3 loss.
4 of 41
azcentral sports’ Sarah McLellan and Dan Bickley discuss the D-Backs’ difficulties on the road and the NBA’s big issue in the playoffs.
5 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo says defensive miscues cost them in a 5-2 loss to the Rockies on Sunday. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
6 of 41
Diamondbacks right-hander Taijuan Walker talks about his outing vs. the Rockies at Coors Field on Sunday. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
7 of 41
Diamondbacks lefty Patrick Corbin was charged with eight runs in four-plus innings against the Rockies on Saturday night.
8 of 41
Manager Torey Lovullo didn’t think his team played fundamentally sound in Saturday night’s 9-1 loss to the Colorado Rockies.
9 of 41
Diamondbacks right-hander Zack Greinke gave up two runs in seven innings in a win over the Rockies on Friday.
10 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo breaks down his team’s win over the Rockies on Friday night.
11 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo on Braden Shipley’s outing and his offense’s struggles vs. Nationals right-hander Max Scherzer. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
12 of 41
Diamondbacks right-hander Braden Shipley gave up three runs in four-plus innings against the Nationals on Thursday afternoon. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
13 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo talks about his team’s inability to come up with a hit in a key situation on Wednesday night, May 3, 2017. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
14 of 41
Diamondbacks lefty Robbie Ray had everything working but still came away with a loss on Wednesday night in D.C., May 3, 2017. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
15 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said his pitching staff did well to hold the Nationals to three runs on Tuesday night.
16 of 41
Taijuan Walker didn’t blame a small strike zone for his abbreviated, 4 2/3-inning outing on Tuesday night.
17 of 41
azcentral sports’ Jay Dieffenbach and Dan Bickley discuss the Rockets’ explosion against the Spurs and a possible pitching implosion for the Diamondbacks.
18 of 41
Diamondbacks outfielder A.J. Pollock speaks about the controversial call that went against him in the 10th inning of Arizona’s win over the Rockies on Sunday. Bob McManaman/azcentral sports
19 of 41
Diamondbacks’ Daniel Descalso talks about his two-run, walk-off homer to beat the Rockies in the 13th inning on Sunday. Bob McManaman/azcentral sports
20 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo discusses the team’s strong pitching fueling Arizona’s walk-off win over the Rockies on Sunday. Bob McManaman/azcentral sports
21 of 41
Diamondbacks starter Patrick Corbin talks about his strong, scoreless outing against the Rockies in Sunday’s win. Bob McManaman/azcentral sports
22 of 41
Diamondbacks closer Fernando Rodney talks about his outing vs. the Rockies, and says he’ll have no trouble bouncing back from his latest setback. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
23 of 41
Diamondbacks right-hander Zack Greinke talks about his start on Saturday night, in which he allowed three earned runs in six-plus innings vs. the Rockies. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
24 of 41
Arizona Diamondbacks pitcher Shelby Miller explains his decision to undergo Tommy John surgery, April 29, 2017. (Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports)
25 of 41
Manager Torey Lovullo, left-hander Robbie Ray and catcher Chris Iannetta react to the loss.
26 of 41
Chris Owings talks about the first multi-homer game of his career, and how he’s feeling at the plate after homering three times in the past four games.
27 of 41
Diamondbacks right-hander Taijuan Walker says his fastball was working well for him on Thursday night.
28 of 41
Arizona Diamondbacks right-hander Shelby Miller says he has a tear in his ulnar collateral ligament and that Tommy John surgery is an option, April 27, 2017. (Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports)
29 of 41
Diamondbacks closer Fernando Rodney on Wednesday’s blown save against San Diego.
30 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo reacts to the Padres’ comeback win.
31 of 41
Wednesday night’s game against the Padres drew the smallest crowd in Diamondbacks history.
32 of 41
Manager Torey Lovullo, first baseman Paul Goldschmidt and left-hander Patrick Corbin react to Tuesday’s win. Sarah McLellan/azcentral sports
33 of 41
Manager Torey Lovullo, right-hander Zack Greinke and shortstop Chris Owings react to Monday’s home win over the Padres. Sarah McLellan/azcentral sports
34 of 41
Diamondbacks right-hander Shelby Miller did not provide many details on his elbow injury on Monday, but he is planning to receive a second opinion on Tuesday in Los Angeles. Nick Piecoro/azcentral sports
35 of 41
D-Backs’ Shelby Miller talks about arm injury suffered during the 6-2 loss to the Dodgers, April 23, 2017. (Scott Bordow/azcentral sports)
36 of 41
David Peralta talks about the Diamondbacks’ offense and his record-setting four doubles Saturday.
37 of 41
Diamondbacks starter Robbie Ray talks after his team’s 11-5 victory over the Dodgers.
38 of 41
Manager Torey Lovullo, right-hander Taijuan Walker, shortstop Chris Owings and first baseman Paul Goldschmidt react to the 13-5 win.
39 of 41
First baseman Paul Goldschmidt says the Diamondbacks couldn’t string together enough hits against the Padres on Thursday night.
40 of 41
Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo talks about his team’s 4-1 loss to the Padres and their 4-6 road trip through San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego.
41 of 41
Zack Greinke on his near no-hitter against Pirates
Lovullo reacts to Greinke’s near no-hitter in win
Diamondbacks snap losing streak with win over Tigers
Diamondbacks drop third straight with loss to Tigers
Shot Clock: D-Backs face pivotal homestand
Torey Lovullo after D-Backs’ latest loss to Rockies
Taijuan Walker after loss to Rockies
Patrick Corbin after being roughed up by Rockies
D-Backs’ Torey Lovullo on ‘tough night’ at Coors Field
Zack Greinke on impressive outing vs. Rockies
Manager Torey Lovullo after win over Rockies
Manager Torey Lovullo after D-Backs lose series vs. Nationals
Braden Shipley after walking six in loss to Nationals
D-Backs’ Torey Lovullo after loss to Nationals
Diamondbacks’ Robbie Ray strikes out 10 in loss to Nationals
Torey Lovullo on D-Backs’ 6-3 win over Nationals
Taijuan Walker on his short start vs. Nationals
Shot Clock: Rockets sizzle, D-Backs fizzle?
A.J. Pollock on controversial play: “You guys saw the replay”
Descalso talks about walk-off home run over Rockies
Lovullo on pitching, more in D-Backs’ wild win
Corbin discusses his scoreless outing vs. Rockies
Fernando Rodney talks about his latest blown save
Zack Greinke after outing vs. Rockies
D-Backs’ Shelby Miller to have Tommy John surgery
Diamondbacks fall 3-1 to Rockies
Chris Owings on his two-homer night
D-Backs’ Taijuan Walker on his 11-strikeout performance vs. Padres
D-Backs’ Shelby Miller considering Tommy John surgery
Fernando Rodney reacts to his blown save against the Padres
Torey Lovullo reacts to Diamondbacks’ ‘heartbreaking’ loss
Diamondbacks attendance hits new low
Diamondbacks pull away from Padres for 9-3 win
Diamondbacks hold on for win over Padres
Shelby Miller on his injury, visit with team doctor
Arizona Diamondbacks’ Shelby Miller discusses arm injury
David Peralta on his record-setting night
Robbie Ray reacts to Saturday’s win over the Dodgers
Diamondbacks use 9-run eighth to overwhelm Dodgers
Paul Goldschmidt on D-Backs’ offense vs. Padres
Manager Torey Lovullo breaks down D-Backs’ loss, road trip
Zack Greinke’s season began with questions. Whether it was his contract or his age, his velocity or his effectiveness, the fact was the Diamondbacks had spent wildly to land him a year ago, but it was unclear if he would ever represent the ace they had hoped they were getting.
But in his eighth start of his second season with the Diamondbacks, Greinke had a night about as dominant as any is his career, giving up just one hit in eight innings of a 2-1 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday at Chase Field.
He flirted with a no-hitter longer than he ever had in the majors. He toyed with the Pirates, hitting spots with his fastball and deceiving them with his slider. He seemed to be ahead in the count nearly the entire game.
The outing was peak Greinke, the latest encouraging sign for a Diamondbacks team that has $206.5 million invested in him.
“He was in total command of every inning,” Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. “He’s been typical Zack for the past several outings. He’s been carrying this staff.”
Throughout spring, concern swirled around the 33-year-old right-hander. Not only was he coming off a down season, but his stuff looked diminished, his fastball off a couple of ticks, his slider no longer biting.
After a start last month at Dodger Stadium, where Greinke was hit hard by his former team, he started poking around in search of answers. He wouldn’t say who he turned to for help, but he said a couple of people told him his slider seemed unusually slow. Since then, he’s been nearly unhittable.
“I started throwing it a little harder, but it’s kind of just going right to a good spot all the time,” Greinke said. “Even if I try to throw it down the middle, it kind of goes down and away. I don’t know if the mechanics are good right now and making the location good, but it’s going to good zones and it’s sharp.”
After Greinke’s start last weekend at Coors Field, Colorado Rockies star Nolan Arenado said the slider was better than he’d ever seen it. Greinke used the pitch heavily on Thursday against the Pirates’ predominantly right-handed lineup, with eight of his 11 strikeouts coming on the pitch.
As it turned out, it was also the pitch Gregory Polanco hit to bring an end to the no-hit bid. Leading off the eighth, Polanco was out in front on a 1-0 fastball, crushing a ball that had home run distance but hooked just foul down the right-field line.
Three pitches later, he did it again, this time mashing a down-and-in slider and managing to keep it just inside the foul pole.
“I made a decent pitch to Polanco but probably too many inside pitches,” Greinke said. “He was obviously on the inner part of the plate that last at-bat with the foul home run earlier and the homer on the slider.”
To that point, the only baserunner Greinke had allowed was on a third-inning walk to Jordy Mercer, who was promptly cut down trying to steal by catcher Jeff Mathis.
The game ended in similar fashion. To start the ninth, Greinke gave way to closer Fernando Rodney, who retired the first two batters before issuing a two-out walk to Josh Harrison.
But Mathis, throwing from his knees, fired a strike to second to gun down Harrison. The Pirates challenged, but the call stood after a lengthy replay review.
“I want to time that throw down to second,” Greinke said. “It was one of the best throws I’ve ever seen.”
Said Mathis: “I just felt like that was the quickest way I was going to get it down there. It was a change-up and I was just trying to get it down there as quick as possible and I’m glad it ended up where it was at.”
It preserved yet another impressive start for Greinke, who has logged five consecutive quality starts while lowering his season ERA to 2.79. Greinke had eight 0-2 counts and another five 1-2 counts. He recorded nine outs on three or fewer pitches.
Working with a fastball that generally sits around 90-91 mph, Greinke was mostly at 88 mph throughout spring training. He acknowledged Thursday he was “a little bit” concerned when camp ended, but he’s quickly erased any doubts.
“The fastball, I felt, was getting hit hard, and the slider didn’t feel good in spring,” he said. “I didn’t feel great. I feel better now than I did coming into the season, that’s for sure.”