Right-hander Zack Greinke makes the second start of his second National League season today when the Milwaukee Brewers visit Wrigley Field to close out a four-game series with the host Chicago Cubs.
A 28-year-old native of Orlando, Fla., Greinke was the sixth overall pick of the 2002 draft by the Kansas City Royals and stayed in the American League through 2010, winning 10 games in 33 starts in his final season.
He came to Milwaukee to begin 2011 and was an instant success in the National League, winning 16 of 22 decisions across 28 starts while posting a 3.83 earned run average across 171 2/3 innings.
Greinke allowed 161 hits and struck out 201 batters.
He's made three career starts against the Cubs, winning twice while allowing nine earned runs and striking out 26 in 19 2/3 innings.
He made his 2012 debut on April 7 against St. Louis and came away a 6-0 winner after seven innings of four-hit ball with no walks and seven strikeouts.
The Brewers made it three straight wins in the series against the Cubs on Wednesday, when George Kottaras backed Yovani Gallardo's strong start with a two-run seventh-inning homer in a 2-1 triumph.
Gallardo (1-1) went seven innings, allowing just one run on five hits while striking out six, Francisco Rodriguez stranded a pair in the eighth and John Axford worked around a two-out ninth-inning double for his second save of the season.
Mat Gamel added a single and a double for Milwaukee.
Starlin Castro knocked in a run in the first inning for the Cubs and Ryan Dempster (0-1) took the loss despite giving up just two runs on five hits over 6 2/3 innings.
Chicago counters Greinke with right-hander Matt Garza, who'll also make his second start of the season and the fourth of his career against Milwaukee.
A former member of the Tampa Bay Rays who pitched in the 2008 World Series, Garza was 10-10 in his first season with the Cubs last season and posted a 3.32 ERA in 198 innings.
He started April 7 against Washington and got a no-decision in Chicago's 7-4 loss after allowing five hits and two runs in six innings.
Garza is 2-1 against the Brewers and has allowed 20 hits and 10 earned runs in 20 2/3 innings with 21 strikeouts.
The Brewers lost five of seven in Chicago last season.