2019 Kyle Hendricks, first inning: 9.00 ERA, 2.600 WHIP, two home runs allowed (5 IP)
2019 Kyle Hendricks, all other innings: 4.33 ERA, 1.574 WHIP, one home run allowed (20⅓ IP)
I mean... what’s going on here? And this isn’t something new, he did this in 2018 as well:
Kyle Hendricks first inning— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) April 27, 2019
2018: 33.0 IP, 25 Runs (25 ER)
2019: 5.0 IP, 9 Runs (5 ER)
It was 3-0 Arizona in the third inning when Albert Almora Jr. singled with two out, bringing up Kris Bryant [VIDEO].
That was good to see — KB’s first home run since Opening Day made the score 3-2. Now the Cubs are back in the game, right?
Well, sort of. Hendricks allowed another run in the bottom of the third to make it 4-2, but it didn’t take too long for Javier Baez to get that run back [VIDEO].
That ball: CRUSHED!
That tweet says it was Javy’s 11th, but that’s not right, it was his ninth. Still:
Javier Báez: first #Cubs player with 9 HR through the team's first 24 games of a season since Andre Dawson in 1987— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) April 27, 2019
Full list of #Cubs to hit 9+ HR through the team's first 24 games of a season— Christopher Kamka (@ckamka) April 27, 2019
2019 - Javier Báez (9 HR)
1987 - Andre Dawson (9 HR)
1970 - Billy Williams (10 HR)
1958 - Lee Walls (9 HR)
1954 - Hank Sauer (10 HR)
1925 - Gabby Hartnett (9 HR)
So that’s good, anyway.
Not good: Hendricks giving up three more runs in the fifth, putting the game out of reach.
Good: Almora having a four-hit night, three singles and a double, his second extra-base hit in as many games.
Almora after the game of April 24: .182/.250/.182
Almora after the game of April 26: .246/.313/.311
That’s still not quite where we’d like him to be, but that’s a pretty amazing improvement in just two days.
Dillon Maples, just recalled, had a Dillon Maples inning: Two walks, but he struck out the side and hit 97 miles per hour with several of his pitches. At least he managed to settle down after the walks to K three straight hitters. Also somewhat encouraging: Tyler Chatwood managed to throw a scoreless inning even while issuing two walks.
The Cubs made things mildly interesting in the ninth by getting two runners on base with two out, but Almora, going for a fifth hit, struck out to end it.
I’m going to make a suggestion here, and then you can vote on it below. Should the Cubs consider using an “opener” for Kyle Hendricks? I’m probably the biggest Hendricks fan here, but something’s obviously messing with his head in the first inning. You’d think “The Professor” could figure it out, but now this has been a year and a month of bad first innings. Why not send someone else out there for Inning 1 and then let Kyle take over? This has worked for other teams.
That’s about all I’ve got on this stinker. Oh, and I am well aware that the jersey the team wears has nothing to do with the result of the game, but this is getting weird again:
Blue alt: 0-5
Road gray: 5-3
I hope they wear the grays the rest of this trip.
That trip continues Saturday evening in Phoenix. I thank the Diamondbacks for starting their Saturday night games at 5:10 p.m. local time, which means 7:10 p.m. in Chicago, a “normal” night game time for those of us in the Midwest. Yu Darvish will start Saturday evening for the Cubs and Zack Godley will go for the D-backs. TV coverage Saturday is via NBC Sports Chicago.
Should the Cubs try an "opener" for games Kyle Hendricks starts?
This poll is closed
Sure, why not? Worth a try.