Zack Greinke continues streak, Dodgers fall to D-Backs in extras

Zack Greinke recorded his 16th consecutive start of five or more innings while allowing two or fewer runs on Friday, which is the longest streak in the Majors since 1914.

Richard Mackson

LOS ANGELES — It took Zack Greinke a while to get into his rhythm Friday night. Still, it was status quo for the former American League Cy Young Award winner.  

Greinke went six innings and allowed just three hits, one run, walked two and struck out eight in a no-decision, but the Dodgers fell to the Diamondbacks for the first time this season, 4-2 in 12 innings.

Juan Uribe sent the game into extra innings with a solo home run to tie the game 2-2 in the bottom of the ninth. In the 12th, the Diamondbacks had a double and a hit batter to start the inning before Aaron Hill hit the eventual game-winning two-RBI single.

For Greinke’s efforts, it was his 16th straight start of five or more innings while allowing two or fewer runs. The streak is the longest in the Majors since 1914.

"I think it takes a lot of skill to do it but you got to get a lot of breaks and I’ve had more than my share," he said. "If you’re not pitching really good you can’t do it. It’s a nice accomplishment."

By Greinke’s standards, he labored through the first three innings as the Diamondbacks were able to get his pitch count up early. Both of his walks came in the first inning.

It wasn’t until the fourth inning, he says, that he was able to get into a groove.

"I didn’t pitch enough strikes the first three innings," he said. "(My rhythm) just comes sometimes and it was one of those things each inning got a little bit better. It wasn’t perfect but I can’t complain too much."

In the sixth, his final inning of work, he struck out the side but in the process his lone blemish ended up over the wall in center field — a solo home run to Arizona catcher Miguel Montero.

"I threw a quality pitch but he took a really good swing," Greinke said. "I thought it was a safe decision to throw that pitch but, obviously, it wasn’t."

Added Montero: "Every single pitch that he has is a plus, so you really don’t know what to think about it. You really don’t know what to look for. You’re just expecting that he’ll make a mistake and, honestly, I really don’t think that was a mistake, either. I just ran into one and got lucky."

Meanwhile, the Dodgers bats continued to have issues putting runs on the board. After averaging 4.8 runs per game over their first 13 games, they’re averaging just 1.8 over their last four games and are 1-3 during that stretch. However, skipper Don Mattingly doesn’t appear to be too concerned. 

"This game is so stupid sometimes," Mattingly said. "You swing the bats, you get eight (runs), you get seven (runs), you’re hitting the ball all over the place. The next thing you know you’re having trouble putting runs on the board.

"You’d like your guys to be robots and hit every time up and get their hits when we need them, exactly when we need them, but it doesn’t seem to work that way."