All Zack, or Zach, day at Camelback as Greinke and Lee pitch

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Zack Greinke didn’t have the best return to spring action on Wednesday. (By: Dustin Nosler)

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Wednesday was a big day at Camelback Ranch. Zack Greinke made his first appearance since injuring his calf on his fourth pitch of the spring on Feb. 28. Most importantly, it marked my return to one of the best spring training parks in the league. OK, I’m not that full of myself.

Greinke ran into a spot of bother in the first inning, allowing two hits, but he kept the Diamonbacks off the scoreboard. He hit 90 MPH on the radar gun on the only pitch I was able to get velocity on. The second inning was a different story, as he got knocked around for four hits and three runs, including a solo home run allowed to former uber prospect Andy Marte.

Greinke’s final line
2 IP, 6 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 HR ,0 BB, 2 K

Craig Minami of True Blue LA said Greinke spoke for roughly eight minutes after his 2-inning outing and 1-inning bullpen stint. He said Greinke said he only really pushed off with his drive leg a couple times at the end of his outing. Presumably, he wasn’t feeling confident enough in his calf to go all-out with it — which is understandable. This is his first extended work of the spring, and it’s unfortunate it’s coming on March 12.

He’s already been ruled out for Australia (good), and he was quoted as saying he wants to be ready for the opening series in San Diego, but still has some work to do on that front. But the most important thing, Greinke completed his scheduled work with no setbacks. That’s a positive for him going forward.

Zach Lee, on the other hand, was looking really good for two innings. Then he went out for an unexpected third inning and got hit around a little. Lee was doing a good job mixing in his pitches and changing speeds — even if he topped out around 90 MPH (hat tip to Molly Knight).

Lee’s final line
2 2/3 IP, 3 H, 4 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

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Zach Lee started off strong, but it didn’t last. (By: Dustin Nosler)

Not the greatest outing, but he’s only allowed three earned runs in 4 2/3 spring innings, and has struck out five batters. Keep in mind, this was only Lee’s second outing of the spring, as he missed time early on with a strained lat. His interim manager Tim Wallach was pleased with Lee’s performance on Wednesday.

“I thought he threw the ball well,” Wallach told reporters after the game. “I haven’t seen that play at second. I thought we had a chance to get that overturned, didn’t happen.

“He battled through the inning and was one pitch away from getting out of it.”

Wallach didn’t earn any points today by making Lee issue an intentional walk to the always dangerous Mike Jacobs in his third inning of work. While it may have been the right decision — strategically (even if IBBs are massively overrated) — it’s a spring training game. Let the kid pitch himself out of a jam. Or at least, give him a chance to do so.

And for those who care, the Dodgers lost the game 9-2. Paul Maholm takes the mound on Thursday for the Dodgers against the Reds at Camelback Ranch.

I’ll be out on the back fields early tomorrow morning and should have a prospecty post going up sometime. Oh, and Mike will get his first experience of Camelback Ranch, and yours truly.

About Dustin Nosler

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Dustin Nosler began writing about the Dodgers in July 2009 at his blog, Feelin' Kinda Blue. He co-hosted a weekly podcast with Jared Massey called Dugout Blues. He was a contributor/editor at The Hardball Times and True Blue LA. He graduated from California State University, Sacramento, with his bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in digital media. While at CSUS, he worked for the student-run newspaper The State Hornet for three years, culminating with a 1-year term as editor-in-chief. He resides in Stockton, Calif.