Astros pitcher Zack Greinke wasn’t trying to make a statement, he just wanted to work fast.
After Greinke’s voice was caught giving away pitches on the television broadcast Wednesday night, some thought he was trying to make a point. The point being that even if you know what pitch is coming, it’s still difficult to hit it. Because Greinke is on the Astros, who faced discipline for their sign-stealing scandal, it seemed like a logical conclusion.
But Greinke explained Wednesday night that he just likes things to go quickly.
“I don’t like taking a long time with a man on second base, especially,” Greinke said, via the Houston Chronicle. “I’m trying to find ways to speed that up. So far this year has been good, but it got messed up today.”
It got “messed up” in the seventh inning when Greinke resorted to yelling out the signs.
“Second set after one,” Greinke could be heard telling catcher Martin Maldonado. “Second set after two.”
Greinke has started to give away his signs and calls on his pitches when runners reach second base this season. He usually just signals the pitch, as seen below when he holds up two fingers before a slider.
However, during Wednesday’s game, he got impatient during the at-bat against Mauricio Dubon.
“Today, there was a man on second base and it got all messed up and it took longer than I was hoping it would take,” Greinke said. “It’s 50 percent my fault and 50 percent Maldy’s fault.”
Greinke admitted the tactic “slowed the pace down” during Wednesday’s game and said it may be “getting too tricky.” But while he’s skeptical on whether it’s actually worth doing, Maldonado appears to be fan.
“It’s good as a catcher not to have to put down or shake a couple of more times and slow the game down,” he said, via MLB.com. “He’s a guy that likes to work quick.”
Whatever Greinke is doing, it’s working. He got off to bad start in his first game, but has pitched well since. In the three games he’s started in August, he boasts a 1.50 ERA and has struck out 16 of the 70 batters he’s faced. He picked up his first win of the season in Wednesday night’s game after not giving up any runs in 6.1 innings pitched.
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