Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo strongly suggested that starter Zack Greinke will not be ready for Opening Day.
Greinke left Wednesday’s start with right groin tightness. He was able to play catch yesterday, but he won’t throw his usual bullpen session tomorrow or make his scheduled start Monday. Lovullo said that it’s not worth trying to press his recovery simply to make Opening Day:
“My mind-set is to not have him play catch-up [just] for one day during the season. We want to make sure he’s strong from Day 1 until the end of the season.”
Makes sense to me. It’s probably worth noting too that Greinke’s velocity, which had been down for a couple of starts, crept back up again before he left the game on Wednesday. There’s a chance that he was dealing with some dead arm and it’s not unreasonable to think that a skipped start and a bit of time off of his routine will help liven it back up again. Which is to say that, assuming his groin issue is not serious, it could be something of a blessing in disguise.
With Greinke on the shelf, Robbie Ray will likely start on Opening Day on March 29. Which is a nice reward for Ray, who pitched lights-out last year.