Kendrick Brilliant As Phillies Stop Slide

Posted by Tim Malcolm, Thu, June 26, 2008 01:15 AM | Comments: 59

It all came together tonight. Pitching was sharp. Hitting was clutch in spots. The superstar came back to life. Managing was aggressive and never let up. It added up to a 4-0 win over the Athletics, the Phils’ first in more than a week. They extended their lead in the National League East to two games over the Marlins with the win.

While the offense finally did their job, the story was Kyle Kendrick, who provided the best start of his career. The line: 8 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 4 K, 1 BB. He had a no-hitter through four. He was mixing up pitches, throwing 71 strikes of a career-high 113 pitches (the ratio separated as the game wore on), keeping the A’s hitters baffled as to what was coming. Nothing dominating, but absolutely efficient against a bad no-homers offense.

And yeah, yeah, the offense finally came around a bit. Sure they left some runners on base (26 in fact), but they got on base, which is step one. Chase Utley looks like he’s back — he went 4-for-5 and missed a cycle by a home run (he would’ve had a natural cycle, too). He was hammering pitches with perfectly timed swings. Great to see. His average is back up to .297, a hit or so away from his regular domain.

Pedro Feliz and Chris Coste also had nice games with two hits each. Feliz knocked an RBI triple while Coste brought home two (Shane Victorino made a great baserunning play to score on one falling single). After Carlos Ruiz’s horrible double play Tuesday, Coste was a breath of fresh air.

Charlie Manuel and the coaching staff should be credited, as well, for the win. Manuel juggled the lineup completely, and while it didn’t work in some spots, the creativity should be applauded. You need to shake things up sometimes. Davy Lopes should get more recognition at the Nation. The Phils stole three bases, including a double steal that manufactured a run in the first inning. And while Steve Smith didn’t get it all right, he should be lauded for aggressively sending Chase Utley early in the game. The Phils had to be aggressive tonight — it helps get the fire out.

All is not cured, however. Jimmy Rollins left five on base in the three-hole, while Ryan Howard — batting fifth — went 0-for-5. But for tonight, put that aside, they got a win. Finally. Maybe the weight will be lifted a bit.

Associated Press photo

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About Tim Malcolm

Tim Malcolm has written 1948 articles on Phillies Nation.

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    You know I’m the type that tries to give credit where credit is due. Rollins did have a single with a man on 2nd and he was throne out at the plate. That throw was immaculate, and I don’t even think the catcher tagged him either. It was close.

  • Posts: 1650 Tim Malcolm

    Avatar of Tim Malcolm

    That was a close play, and Rollins did what he had to on that one. I actually think he’d be better served in the two-hole.

  • Posts: 0 Jeffrey

    26 LOB? Wild!
    Seriously, there was so much to like about the way they won this. I’ll be tired and cranky tomorrow from staying up to watch all nine innings but whatever.
    In fact, I’m pleased that the only quibble I can even come up with is that Cholly didn’t send Dobbs to hit for Bruntlett in the 8th with the bases loaded against a righty. I seem to have a hazy memory of Dobbs playing first a bunch of times last year just fine…

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    Yeah, but at that point in time with a 4 run lead I just think he wanted to see how Bruntlett did in the situation.

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    A good line up would be


  • Posts: 0 Greg

    I like that lineup.

  • Posts: 0 NateB

    That’s a good lineup against lefties. You can’t bat Werth lead-off against righties tho. By the way… Victorino after Howard is perfect because Howard will either strike out to end the inning or clear the bases with a homer- giving Victorino a lead-off situation with Feliz and Coste ready to knock him in.

  • Posts: 0 Chris L

    Against righties, either

    switch Werth and Vic — with Jenkins playing occassionally


    have Dobbs hit second, behind Vic and Werth/Feliz bats behind Howard

  • Posts: 0 NC Jason

    I think too much is placed on the righty vs lefty match-up Werth is a patience hitter who if given the at bats would be successful against righties.

  • Posts: 0 Tom

    haha GIDP ….

  • Posts: 0 Lewisauce

    If Kendrick ever does get that “out” pitch that he’s sort-of been working on, he could be devastating. I don’t mean 300 Ks devastating, I mean like 15-8 season avg., 4.2 ERA for a decade or so devastating. Not a bad guy to have in your three- or four-spot for his career. (Before people laugh at the 15-8 thing, please note that his big-league record since coming up last year is something like 17-7.)

    I still can’t stand Howard.

    Wouldn’t mind seeing Dobbs get the start at first base today, especially since Harden’s a righty. That would weaken the bench, but you’d still have Bruntlett, Taguchi and (presumably) Werth and Coste, since GIDP will likely get the start.

    Speaking of Harden, I wish I could watch this game (gotta work instead). Should be verrrry interesting …

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    I wish I could watch this game too. I want to see what kind of stuff he has and throw shit at my TV and scream about how we better leave Oakland with him. I had a dream we won 2-1. I hope I’m Nostrodamus or some shit.

  • Posts: 1650 Tim Malcolm

    Avatar of Tim Malcolm

    Lewis I agree 100 percent about Kendrick. It looks as if the change is starting to come around, and once that’s working consistently, the guy is a definite possibility for 15-8/4.00 ERA annually. For a 3/4 starter, that’s what you want. The best thing about his start is once guys got his change/sink timed later in the outing, he dialed up the fastball and hit 93/94 THEN he went with the sink for the out. Very tough for a hitter to figure it out.

    The one thing we can all say about Kyle is he is a smart pitcher. He knows the situation and his abilities. When he doesn’t have control it’s a rollercoaster, but as we saw last night, when he’s throwing strikes he is very tough to beat.

    I too would like to see Dobbs in the lineup. Maybe Werth/Rollins/Utley/Burrell/Howard/Victorino/Dobbs/Feliz/Ruiz? Although I can see Geoff starting over Jayson.

    Pronouncing Ruiz’s nickname — giddy-up or Gidip?

  • Posts: 0 Mike T.

    K-How’s back, and he’s better than ever – for summerrrrrr this year, the K-How’s here!!! (singing)

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    Actually, I was quite impressed that he made contact 3 times last night.

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    Just read something interesting, and this is about Ruiz’s ability to call a game imo.

    Phillies are 15-17 with Coste starting and 27-19 with Ruiz starting. I wonder how many of those 19 losses were because of Ruiz’s inability to hit?

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Guys… we’re contradicting everything we said last week… after Kendrick got ROCKED by Boston.. we all wanted him to go back to AAA and work on stuff.. he had a very effective outing last night against a weak A’s lineup. I agree that he can be a solid #4 or #5 for a few years though!! Eaton has been good lately, so unless he gets lit-up on his start, we need to give him credit for keeping us in games so far this year.

    The weakest link on the staff right now is Myers… and I’ve heard reports that list Myers as being “available as a relief pitcher” for trade purposes.. don’t we have to move him to the pen before we do that??? I think a change of scenery is what he needs.. and I wouldn’t be too sad to see him go.

    Carlos “GIDP” Ruiz!!!!!!! AWESOME nickname.. whoever came up with that is witty..

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    JUST SAY…We can get Sabathia for Carrasco, Marson, Victorino/Werth …. is it worth it.. and which Phillies outfielder would you rather keep.. knowing that Burrell may or may not be back next year.

    Coste is a much better hitter.. Ruiz is much better defensively, and is supposed to be a great “receiver of the baseball” .. i guess he catches well (for a catcher) is what they mean.. Their offense should be able to score enough runs without needing help from the C/ 8-hole in the lineup anyway!

  • Posts: 0 Mike T.

    Since we’re doing nicknames, can I install K-How for our tremendous first baseman?

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    “Nolan Ryan Howard – Strikeout King”

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    haha Don M. Is this Wheel of Fortune before and after?

  • Posts: 0 OZ

    great win. i was at the READING Phils last night:

    Golson DNP, injury to wrist or hand
    beer more pricy than last time
    accidentally dropped the F-bomb (kids everywhere)
    Bisenius & Outman struggled w/ control
    it was minor league night at “Al’s” as well

    perfect weather
    unpretentious players who look truly pissed when they don’t produce
    gave Screwball the Mascot low-five
    Bisenius & Outman both consistently in the 90′s
    Mike Schmidt threw out first pitch
    after a slow start, offense played some great small ball (Marson)

    If you haven’t been, it is a great, great guys night out in the summer.

  • Posts: 0 scot

    As nicknames go, I think K-How is even funnier than GIDP.

    Great great win last night. I kept wanting to go to bed, had to run in the morning before work. But between Kendrick’s performance and Chase’s near cycle I couldn’t get myself to bed.

    More of that please.

  • Posts: 0 dan

    Anybody hear about Ed Wade getting thrown to the ground by his neck by Chacon? That’s hilarious…

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    I can’t wait till Marson comes up. I hope it’s next season. Does he look ready to be up here soon, Oz?

  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    Don…it is absolutely NOT worth it. CC wont guarantee anything. also. greg golson will probably be ready to come up next year, as will marson and carrasco. there are three integral parts to your team. now, if you KNOW hell stay here next year thats a little different. why not get a guy that i sunder control for another year? i think thats beneficial because you need some stability in the rotation that performs at a high level.

    if they get rid of their top prospects WITHOUT getting a guy who will be here next year or beyond, in two years, they will be one of the worst teams in baseball.

    theyre thin as it is. the outfield is thin. even with golson up there next year they are still thin. they cant afford it.

    the general manageer has to be creative enough to make a move for a number two type guy WITHOUT crippling us for the future.

    is it hard? sure it will be but not impossible

  • Posts: 0 NC Jason

    I give Chacon credit who didn’t want to do that to Wade when he was our GM??

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    i’m sure Gillick realizes how thin our outfield is and won’t cripple it too bad. I wonder if that’s why they’re looking at Freel?

  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    Given my obsession with pitching it was such a treat to see kendrick have a career night. He hes improved a lot over the past year. I think they have developed him pretty well. they recognized the need for an outptch and they are having him develop it over time. i think it would be insane to include him in any package at all. you dont give away young major league quality pitching even for sabathia. hes here to stay.

  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    freel would be cheap. i think he makes a mil or so. i kind of want a veteran outfielder to replace taguchi whos a nice, patient hitter. playoff experience. grisly veteran who wont swing at garbage. they kind of needed jenkins to be that guy but he isnt and he cant play everyday. so now they have to fix that too

  • Posts: 1650 Tim Malcolm

    Avatar of Tim Malcolm

    The Wade thing I’d almost post, but he’s not out trouble and hasn’t been for a few years. It is funny seeing Wade get the biz, but IMO, Chacon acted like a baby.

    Last week we got on Kendrick because he had no control and the Sox are patient hitters. That’s the rub with Kendrick. It’s all about control.

    I also need to do more with the Minors. The Golson injury is a little longer than just day-to-day. And Marson’s been slumping a bit lately. Brummett got hit around a bit two days ago.

  • Posts: 0 Gavin

    We’ve all talked trade. If the Phils get a starter, who the hell do we move? I hate to say it, but I trust Myers over Eaton. Obviously Brett’s sucked ass, but Eaton is teetering on the brink of sucking and really sucking all the time.

    I may be wrong, but I think if the Phils get a starter, Kendrick, Eaton, or Myers will be in the deal, and most likely Kendrick b/c of his age and contract. Thern we’ll be stuck with both of them again.

    I think the Phils should trade for a bench stick. Release So, and get a guy like Tony Clark that can give us a Ryan Howard break once a week, and hit bombs off the bench.

  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    They were saying on the radio this morning that in an interview with comcast, gillick was openly commenting on myers’ trade value, stating that as a reliever right now his value is high. thats why they need to bring up carrasco in the meantime to get myers in teh pen ASAP to show that he can make the transition yet again liek he did last year.

  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    I cannot emphasize enough how stupid it is to trade kendrick. there no reason to. i dont think theyll trade him anyway. you dont urinate away young major league pitching, especially not for rent a pitchers. trading people like kendrick is why theyre thin in the rotation to begin with. tahts a cardinal sin. prospects are one thing, but major league reayd young pitching is liek gold

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    Myers is going to go to a team that needs a closer…You know who needs a closer, the Padres need a closer. How much more fuel does Trevor Hoffman have in him? The Indians need a closer, the A’s need a closer, the Dodgers need a closer, and the Brewers need a closer. All 5 of those teams have a pitcher that would be nice to pick up right now. I wonder how many of them would want Myers as a closer?

  • Posts: 0 Mike T.

    Oz, I agree – Reading has a great ballpark, I’ve been there several times. Always a great experience.

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    The Dodgers have Saito… and Broxton… both right-handed, back-end bullpen guys. They have no need for Myers.

    I think the team with the most need..is the Brewers… Ben Sheets said that he wants to be a free agent after the season, so it makes sense for them to dump him. He would be cheaper to sign then Sabathia, and would compliment Hamels very well with the LHP-RHP as your #1, #2 mix…

  • Posts: 0 Gavin

    All the teams that need a closer would not be willing to give away anybody that could help us this year, which is the whole point.

  • Posts: 0 Griffin

    The A’s have Huston Street. The Padres have Heath Bell to take over for Hoffman next year, The Dodgers are set, but the Indians and the Brewers need relief help. Those teams aren’t going to trade anything off their current roster, they’re built to win now (although the Indians may turn into sellers if they trade C.C.)

    Props to Kendrick, I’ve slagged on him in the past but he was awesome last night.

  • Posts: 0 Don M

    Ben Sheet and Bill Hall

    For Myers, Carrasco, and Adrain Cardenas …. pull the trigger

    Hall used to have pop…has 10 HR this year… but gives you options to move Victorino or Werth, or let Burrell walk if you need to.

  • Posts: 0 Griffin

    Ben Sheets is a rental and will test free agency at the end of the year.

  • Posts: 0 Gavin

    If Gallardo was healthy the Brewcrew might be tempted, but they are thin at SP too.

    Why do we need Bill Hall?

  • Posts: 0 Gavin

    Lets face it. The Phils are stuck with Myers and Eaton.

  • Posts: 0 Griffin

    The Brew Crew are going to be buyers not sellers. They’re a top 3 team in the NL along with the Cubs and Cards.

  • Posts: 0 Bruce

    Just wondering… with Gordon hurting, wouldn’t it make sense to put Myers in his place (in a set-up role) and call up JA Happ from AAA and see how he does in the rotation.

  • Posts: 0 Gavin

    What about the Oswalt possibility. We should trade with Wade anytime we have the chance. He’d take Myers.

  • Posts: 0 Gavin

    Not a bad idea Bruce. I’d bring up Bastardo or Carrasco before Happ I think.

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    Yeah, the A’s do have a closer in Street, but he blows. The Dodgers don’t even have anyone in their bullpen that has any saves right now…go look it up. Heath Bell might bomb as a closer, it happens sometimes. Why take him out of set up role if he’s really good there? I really can’t see the Brewers trading Sheets at all. I can see the Indians trading Sabathia and taking Myers because of how badly they need a closer.

  • Posts: 0 Geoff

    Id call up carrasco to see if hes the real deal. DEF move myers to setup. gordon needs Dl’d. 15 days. get some rest and try it out before the all star break and rest more during taht week.

    they WILL get someone. how long is cliff lee signed for? just curious.

  • Posts: 0 Phil

    Gillick, Amaro, and Montgomery made it pretty clear they’ll get someone. Amero was nonchalant about it, and Gillick and Montgomery made it seem like they’re going to get someone really big. Let’s see what happens.

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