Published January 13, 2015
Right-hander Zack Greinke returns to the scene of his initial National League success on Tuesday night, when the Los Angeles Dodgers visit the Milwaukee Brewers for the second of three games at Miller Park.
Greinke, a 29-year-old Floridian, spent 2011 and the early part of 2012 with the Brewers and won 25 of 34 decisions across 49 starts between stints with the Kansas City Royals and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.
He was dealt to the Angels for three players on July 27, 2012, then signed a deal with the Dodgers in the offseason that could pay him as much as $147 million through 2018.
His initial weeks with the Dodgers have been littered by injuries that have limited him to just three starts, two in April and another in a return on May 15, when he allowed a run on five hits in 5 1/3 innings of a 3-1 win over Washington.
Greinke, of course, suffered a broken collarbone in a brawl against the San Diego Padres on April 11.
In 16 2/3 overall innings, he's given up just three runs and 12 hits while walking one batter, striking out 14 and allowing an opposition batting average of .200.
The Brewers reply with rookie righty Hiram Burgos, who tries to end a four- start winless skid.
The Puerto Rican debuted with a 5-1 defeat of the Chicago Cubs on April 20, but has since gone 0-2 in four outings while his earned run average has puffed up from 1.50 in five innings to 6.58 in 26 innings.
He was nicked for three runs on eight hits in five innings at Pittsburgh in a May 16 outing, dropping a 7-1 decision.
Burgos faced the Dodgers in his second start on April 26 and allowed three runs on four hits in six innings of a game the Brewers ultimately lost, 7-5.
He's 1-0 in two home starts.
On Monday, Clayton Kershaw fired a three-hit complete game, and Andre Ethier and Matt Kemp homered, as the Dodgers edged the Brewers, 3-1.
Kershaw (5-2) walked one and had five strikeouts to earn his 10th career complete game. He was one out shy of going the distance in his most recent start, last Tuesday against the Washington Nationals.
"It's pretty amazing to play defense behind him," Ethier said. "You thank your lucky stars you don't have to face him. It feels good, but we still need to score more runs for him."
Ethier tacked on an RBI triple for the Dodgers, who were swept in a three-game set at Atlanta over the weekend.
Yovani Gallardo (3-4) surrendered eight hits and three runs and had seven strikeouts over six innings for the Brewers. He's lost three consecutive starts.
Gallardo exited after throwing 105 pitches with just 57 for strikes.
"I think his pitch count is always up in the past because he's a strikeout pitcher," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. "I think Yo will get better than that and will be able to go deeper. His command is getting better and he had more life on his fastball."
Norichika Aoki drove in the lone run for Milwaukee, which fell to 3-15 this month.
The Dodgers won two of three from the Brewers in a late April series this season, while Milwaukee won six of seven games between the teams in 2012.