MARYVALE, Ariz. — Brewers right-hander Matt Garza said he generally enjoyed his three seasons as a Cub, but the feisty former Ray said he will bring extra intensity to the mound whenever he faces Milwaukee's NL Central Division rival this season.
"I wish them the best," Garza told the Chicago Sun-Times. "But I like where I'm at, and I'm going to try to kick their teeth in every time I get a chance."
Garza won 21 games for the Cubs before being dealt to the Rangers at the July trade deadline. He ended up going to the Brewers for four years and $50 million after going a combined 10-6 with a 3.82 ERA over 24 games with the Cubs and Texas in 2013.
Garza, 30, told the Sun-Times he was not happy about being on the trading block for much of this time in Chicago and how contract talks with management ultimately went nowhere.
Former teammates on the Cubs brushed off Garza's comments. "Garza wants to kick everyone's teeth in when he plays them," staff ace Jeff Samardzija said. "Above all, Garza plays baseball to compete."
More Cubs: Samardzija will start opening day against the Pirates, the club said. Travis Wood will pitch the second game and Edwin Jackson the third.
A's: Projected right-handed starters Jarrod Parker (right forearm tightness, soreness) and A.J. Griffin (sore elbow) could start the season on the disabled list. "Obviously, potentially it is a couple of blows for us," said manager Bob Melvin, who added that even if both are cleared after doctor exams they would not immediately return to game action.
Braves: Brandon Beachy, who had elbow ligament replacement surgery in June 2012, could find out Monday that he needs a second Tommy John surgery and face another yearlong rehabilitation. Kris Medlen also faces the prospect of surgery when he and Beachy see noted surgeon James Andrews on Monday. "Lot of frustration," said Beachy, who also had an arthroscopic procedure to remove a bone chip in September 2013.
Dodgers: Right-hander Josh Beckett, expected to be the fifth starter, left his start against the Cubs after three innings because of a sore right thumb.
Royals: Right-hander Brett Tomko, a 14-year big-league veteran who turns 41 on April 7, agreed to a minor-league contract. He has pitched only 17⅔ innings in the majors since 2009, making eight relief appearances in 2011 with Texas.
Tigers: Third baseman Nick Castellanos, the club's first pick in the 2010 amateur draft, had three hits and drove in two runs to extend his Grapefruit League-leading RBI total to 15 in a 12-6 win over the Nationals.
Twins: All-Star closer Glen Perkins agreed to a four-year contract that guarantees him $22,175,000.