Zack Greinke takes his boos in Kansas City, says he deserves them

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Royals fans booed their team’s former ace last night and they got to see Zack Greinke take the loss too. Bill Shaikin asked Greinke how he felt about that. As with most things, he was pretty clear-eyed about it:

“I don’t know,” Greinke said. “I was pretty rude on the way out. They have every right to be mad at me.”

Probably so. He asked to be traded from Kansas City and news of that and his attendant dissatisfaction with life on the Royals hit the fans before left town. Still, as Shaikin notes, Geinke had pitched in Kansas City twice since leaving the Royals and he wasn’t booed on those occasions. Maybe his big deal with the Dodgers was the difference here. Maybe it was just random.

Diamondbacks, T.J. McFarland avoid arbitration

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Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.

McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).

McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.