Could Kyle Hendricks’ recent outing indicate he’s starting to turn the page?
Hendricks took the hill in his second start of July against the Giants Monday night, and this could’ve been his best performance in a Cubs uniform.
That’s according to manager Joe Maddon, after he spoke with reporters after the game.
“I thought Kyle was outstanding.” Maddon said. “That’s the Kyle that we all know and love. That’s actually one of the best games I’ve seen him throw physically. His stuff was that good.”
“He was fresh there at the end, and he did an outstanding job out there.”
Hendricks tossed 8.1 innings, yielding five hits, one unearned run, one walk and tallied eight strikeouts.
For Hendricks, it was a huge step in the right direction, and he hopes to build on this performance.
“Now you just want to keep rolling.” Hendricks said postgame. “Stay on the routine and try to lock in on these good habits.”
“Relief in a way but still it’s just one outing. Felt good to feel the good ones, and now I’ve got to ingrain those good habits. But today was a big positive for me.”
Before this start, Hendricks started against the Tigers July 3rd, and he lasted just five innings, gave up seven hits and three earned runs.
Now three earned runs is not a lot, but it was a positive sign after his rough month of June.
Hendricks finished at 1-4, with a 7.03 ERA and 1.685 WHIP in 24.1 innings pitched.
This was something the Cubs aren’t used to seeing out of the “professor”, considering Hendricks led MLB in ERA in 2016 at 2.13.
In 2016 and 2017, Hendricks combined for a 2.51 ERA.
But coming into the start against the Giants, Hendricks ERA was at 4.27. That quickly dropped to 3.93 after yesterday.
As his ERA continues to slowly drop, it’s encouraging for the Cubs pitching staff.
This is definitely a confidence booster to say the least for Hendricks. Even though he got the no decision against the Giants, consider it a job well done.