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Zack Greinke zeroes in on Dodgers record book in final start

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Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Zack Greinke will end his regular season on Saturday night with a start against the Padres, putting the final touches on one of the great pitching seasons in Dodgers history.

Greinke enters play with a 1.68 ERA, leading likely Cy Young Award winner Jake Arrieta (1.77) in a close race. Greinke will lead the majors in ERA barring a blow-up start; if he allows three earned runs, he needs at least 4⅓ innings.

If he allows four earned runs, Greinke needs at least 9⅓ innings, something that won't happen even though this will be more of a full start for Greinke rather than a tune-up since the right-hander skipped a start on Sept. 23 with a sore right calf.

The last time Greinke allowed four earned runs at Dodger Stadium was June 1, 2014, against Pittsburgh.

He has allowed four runs this season to the Padres. In four starts.

Greinke has allowed more than three earned runs just twice all season, and on Saturday looks for his 30th quality start of the year, something not done by a Dodgers pitcher since 1969, when Claude Osteen had 31 and Bill Singer 30. The last MLB pitcher with 30 quality starts in a season was Felix Hernandez in 2010 for the Mariners.

Greinke has lasted at least six innings in all 31 starts this season.

With eight strikeouts on Saturday, Greinke would reach 200 on the season for the second straight year and the fifth time in his career. Should Greinke reach 200, he would join Clayton Kershaw as just the second pair of Dodgers teammates each with 200 strikeouts in back-to-back seasons, joining Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale (1962-1965).

Since joining the Dodgers, Greinke is 27-5 with a 2.18 ERA in 45 starts at Dodger Stadium, with 290 strikeouts and 53 walks in 301⅔ innings, including 9-1 with a 1.48 ERA in 16 home starts this season.

No Dodgers pitcher has ever had an adjusted ERA+ of 200 or higher, topping out at 197 by Clayton Kershaw in 2014. Greinke, who had a 205 ERA+ in his American League Cy Young Award-winning season in 2009 with Kansas City, enters Saturday with a 223 ERA+.

Greinke would need 13⅓ innings to pass Rube Marquard (1916) for the best raw ERA in Dodgers franchise history (1.58), but should Greinke keep or lower his current 1.68 mark he would hold the second-best ERA in club history.

Greinke is also leading the majors in WHIP at 0.852, narrowly ahead of Koufax (.855 in 1965) and Kershaw (.857 in 2014) for the lowest in a season in Dodgers history.

Game info

Time: 6:10 p.m. PT

TV: SportsNet LA