If Zack Greinke wants to pitch in 2024, the Kansas City Royals appear to have a spot in the rotation for him.
Jon Morosi from MLB Network spoke with Royals GM JJ Picollo on Friday, with Greinke as part of the conversation. Picollo stated that Greinke is deciding whether or not he wants to pitch again in 2024, leaving his future up in the air.
Time for Zack Greinke to transition to new role with Kansas City Royals
Greinke made it seem as though he had thrown his last pitch. He had asked for the ball after getting the final out of the fifth inning in his outing on September 26 in Detroit, a memento from a stadium where he had always pitched well. He made one more start in Kauffman Stadium, picking up the victory on the final day of the regular season.
Those two outings were some of the few highlights of his 2023 campaign. Greinke struggled over most of the season, posting a 5.06 ERA and a 1.272 WHiP over his 142.1 innings, striking out 97 batters with 23 walks. He continued to be a solid innings eater and threw strikes, but he was not close to being the pitcher he was even two years ago.
There are non-financial reasons for Greinke to come back. He is just 21 strikeouts away from the 3000 strikeout mark and would be the 20th pitcher in MLB history to reach that milestone. Getting to that threshold would cap what is already a Hall of Fame career. But it is also fair to wonder how much Greinke really cares about getting those final 21 strikeouts. Walking away now, when he is so close, would be entirely in character for him.
Ultimately, it comes down to whether or not he feels he can still perform and if he is enjoying himself. That, more than anything else, could make the difference as to whether or not Greinke comes back. If he does want another season, then the Royals will be waiting.
Zack Greinke has yet to decide if he wants to return for the 2024 season. The Kansas City Royals have a spot open for him if so.