Greinke, the 2009 American League Cy Young Award winner, has flourished for the Brewers this season, going 9-3 with a 3.57 ERA and 117 strikeouts. The right-handed hurler first emerged under the watchful eye of Red Sox pitching coach Bob McClure.
From 2006 to 2011 the duo worked together with the Royals, and Greinke quickly became one of MLB’s most dominant starters. Considering the Red Sox are eyeing starting pitching at the trade deadline, McClure could reuniting with his former protégé.
So if Red Sox general manager Ben Cherington asked McClure for a recommendation, what would he say?
“Shoot, I’d love to have a guy like that,” McClure said. “Who wouldn’t? He can be a dominant, dominant pitcher — a strike thrower with plus stuff, real competitive. Yeah, who wouldn’t want a quality guy like that?
“I think we have some pretty good guys here, but I wouldn’t do it just in spite of one of our other guys because we have six guys here who can do a pretty good job. If you’re just saying ‘Would you do it?’ as a front office person, I’d definitely have to think about it. It depends on what it’ll cost you. It ain’t gonna come cheap.”
Through nine seasons in the majors, Greinke has shined, but for small market teams like Kansas City and Milwaukee. While the Brewers are vying to sign the 28-year-old to a contract extension, larger market teams are also interested in Greinke’s services.
There’s also been chatter about whether Greinke could thrive in a large media market. When asked about the pitcher’s mental toughness to handle a city like Boston, McClure offered his stamp of approval.
“If he wanted to come to Boston, to Philly, to New York, to Chicago, if he wanted to — yeah, he could,” McClure said. “It’d just be whether he wanted to or not. If he’s all in, then he’s all in. It just depends because there are some things that are uncomfortable [playing in a big market]. But if he really wants to go to a certain place, he’s do it.”
Count McClure as a believer in Greinke’s skills.