When Zack Greinke stunned the baseball world and decided to sign with the Arizona Diamondbacks, many thought it was simply a case of a player taking the most money possible.
While Arizona did present the most lucrative offer, there was much more to it than that. Greinke was officially introduced by the Diamondbacks today, and the ace discussed why he chose to head to the desert.
One reason for his decision is that, while playing against the Diamondbacks in July, he found himself to be extremely impressed by the club’s playing style and roster.
“I guess it started around the All-Star break, or a little before the All-Star break, last season and the Dodgers were playing Arizona and I just was watching all their position players run around making all these great catches, taking extra bases like crazy against us and then you look at the leaderboard and they had the best offense in the game, scored the most runs, so I was like, ‘Dang, that’s a pretty impressive group of guys they got over there,’ and just realized it then,” he said (via Fox Sports).
Greinke felt Arizona just needed some pitching help.
“And then you looked at the pitching staff and they all were talented but they weren’t pitching very good. I was just thinking, like, ‘Man, they have something going on there. Just need a couple things and could be as good as anybody.'”
It also helped that Greinke was already familiar with the area.
“It happened very fast but it was a team I was very familiar with. I didn’t need a lot of extra time to get to know people or the city, being in spring training here the last 12 years.”
With the Diamondbacks adding Shelby Miller as well, it’s easy to see Grienke’s point of view here. Not only did the Diamondbacks offer the most money (and an additional year), he still has a chance to contend, and also gets to play in a place that he’s already accustomed to. Unfortunately for the Dodgers, not only does it hurt their team, it significantly strengthens a division rival.