Zack Greinke gets back on track

Two months after signing a record contract to join the Dodgers, Zack Greinke put the team and its fans through some anxious moments this spring.

In the middle of camp, he had some inflammation in his right elbow, an injury that caused some alarm before an MRI revealed no structural damage. Then, he looked shaky Monday in Arizona, barely getting through three innings and allowing five runs on six hits against Kansas City.

Greinke adjusted the grip on his slider and had better results Saturday against the Angels, pitching five strong innings, allowing one run on three hits and striking out five. He'll make his season debut Friday against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

"I always like to have two or three good starts to feel confident," Greinke said. "Preferably, last start would have been good, too, but I'm ready to go."

There has been some mystery around Greinke's elbow injury since it cropped up, in part because the team never pinpointed its origin, and Greinke wouldn't discuss it in great detail. He said he can't predict whether it will arise again once the season starts, but that it's manageable now.

"It wasn't that bad in the first place," Greinke said. "I think I said that, but they were just taking precautions."