#Brewers announce Zack Greinke will not start Wednesday as scheduled. No reason given yet.
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) July 16, 2012
Moments after the above tweet circulated throughout the Greater Nerdosphere, the lack of specific intel caused swirls of sophistry and, frankly, bullshit to explode from the rumour mongering outlets. HE’S BEEN TRADED! they speculated. HE’S HURT, they assumed. The very same writer featured above began tweeting grim statistics pertaining to the relatively low quality outings turned in by Greinke here in July.
The baseball world eagerly awaits an update on the status of Zack Greinke, erring on the side of hysterical in lieu of actual information. It lasted all of 10 minutes.
#Brewers GM Melvin: Nothing physically wrong with Greinke. Just pushing him back, “recharging his batteries.”
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) July 16, 2012
Zack Greinke needs a break. He just had the All Star break but he and the team think it best to skip his next start. The end.
Greinke famously made three straight starts for the Brewers after he was ejected in the first inning of the second-last game before the All Star break. The Brewers sent Greinke to the hill the very next day, then started him again Friday coming out of the break. In these three starts spanning six days (two of which were on regular rest), Greinke threw 167 pitches.
The physical toll of these starts might seem insignificant but gearing up for a Major League start requires focus and preparation the likes of which a lowly blogger cannot comprehend. Adding the strain of 1) an emotional ejection early in the game, leaving his teammates to scramble to fill his innings and 2) sub-standard performance by his own expectations and needing a few days to shag flies and get in some bullpen work doesn’t seem like such a bad idea.
The speculation and spin is going to grow louder as fans/pundits wonder why a player needs to recharge his batteries after the All Star break. Get ready to read a variety of takes on a central theme along the “Is the trade talk getting to him? His history of mental illness suggests..” line.
All of which is, very likely, garbage. Greinke hasn’t pitched as well in July as he did earlier this season but he remains an elite starter. Not even three bad starts doesn’t make Greinke a bust or a shrinking violet or anything else. It means two and a half bad starts. It isn’t going to change the King’s ransom the Brewers believe he can net them nor will it diminish the nine-digit payday awaiting him.
Unless, of course, there is something physically wrong with him. It could be anything. OMG, everybody panic!