A month removed from a broken collar bone, and Los Angeles Dodgers righty Zach Greinke took another step in his return to the rotation Friday.
The 29-year-old ace pitched 4 1/3 innings with the Class-A Rancho Cucamonga Quakes Friday night, allowing eight runs, three earned, along with six hits. Greinke also added four strikeouts with no walks.
Totaling 80 pitches in the rehab-start, Greinke reportedly experienced no discomfort, and according to CBS Sports. He wants to return Wednesday against the Washington Nationals at Dodger Stadium, however the team has not commented.
Greinke suffered the injury on April 11, his second start of the season, after a fight with San Diego Padres outfielder Carlos Quentin, who believes the former Cy Young winner has intentionally plunked him over the years.
Both benches cleared and a melee ensued, leading Los Angeles manager Don Mattingly to call for Quentin to be suspended until Greinke makes his return. That lofty demand didn’t go entirely unheard by the league office. Quentin served an eight-game suspension.
Currently last in the NL West at 13-21, the Dodgers could certainly use Greinke on the mound. The team’s ERA is 12th in the NL, and 23rd overall in baseball.
The team’s new ownership group signed Greinke to a six-year, $147 million contract in December, hoping he and Clayton Kershaw could propel the Dodgers to their first playoff appearance since 2009. Kershaw has done his part, with a 1.62 ERA and 56 strikeouts for a 3-2 record.
In 10 seasons, Grienke has a career 3.75 ERA and won the AL Cy Young in 2009. He’s pitched a minimum of 200 innings in four of the last five seasons.