20-2. Yea yea, the Phillies scored 20 runs for the second time this season, the first time they’ve done that since 1900. But the bigger story is Kyle Kendrick. Everyone knows the Phillies are going to score runs – they’re 1 run behind the Cubs for the season (Cubs have 374 in 68 games, Phillies 373 in 69 games). They’re going to overtake Chicago in that category, it’s only a matter of time.
So get over the back to back to back homers from Chase Utley, Ryan Howard, and Pat Burrell. Get over the 9 run 4th inning and Ryan Howard‘s second homer. The real story of this game is Kyle Kendrick, who went 7 innings and allowed only 1 earned run, a Skip Schumaker homer.
The game marked Kendrick’s one year anniversary with the Phils since being called up from AA Reading on June 12 of last year. In that span Kendrick has gone 16-6 over 34 games. By winning pct, he has been great at .727. By ERA, not spectacular at 4.13. Nor by WHIP, a so-so 1.35. Nonetheless, Kendrick eats innings and has the best run support in the league since coming up a year ago. Kendrick averages almost 6 innings per start and the team averages a whopping 8.14 runs per 9 innings when he’s on the mound. Wow?
Kendrick is no Cole Hamels (who, by the way, has weak run support at 5.25 per 9 innings). But Hamels is is an ace. Kendrick is a back of the rotation starter, with a knack for for being in the right place at the right time. He struggled early this season, but the Phillies are 10-1 in his last 11 starts, and 11-3 in all of his starts this season.
For some, unexplained reason, the Phillies produce for the 23 year old. Perhaps the reason is that Kendrick isn’t Cole Hamels. And, maybe that explains Hamels’ poor run support too – because he is who he is.
Kyle Kendrick, a role player, does exactly what is asked of him. This Phillies offense will carry just about anyone who gives them a chance to win (except Cole Hamels), and that’s exactly what Kyle Kendrick does. The best part of it all? Kendrick is still young, a year younger than Hamels (24).
Last season Kyle Kendrick helped lead the Phillies to the playoffs, doing exactly what was asked of him. 14 starts into this season, Kendrick is doing exactly the same thing.