It’s Time To Remove Kyle Kendrick From The RotationBREAKING NEWS, News, Phillies Thursday, August 9th, 2012
On Wednesday night Kyle Kendrick turned in a rough start, lasting just 3.1 innings and allowing six runs (all earned) on seven hits. After being removed from the game in the fourth inning, the right-hander was showered with boos from the crowd, and the pitcher wasn’t pleased with the treatment he received from the fans.
“I guess that’s how it is with me,” Kendrick said. “It’s, ‘What have you done for me lately?’ You always want to pitch well. Yeah, it was a bad outing. I have to move forward.”
It’s been a rough year for this team, and frustrations are certainly high for all involved from the players to the fans, but the last thing a player should ever do is throw venom back the fans. Kendrick should know better than that by now after more than five years in Philadelphia.
You can’t let what the fans do or say get to you and impact your performance. Its a poor attitude like that which prevents Kendrick from being anything more than what he is in this league; a decent spot-starter. If he’s worried about what the fans will say about his performances, he can’t pitch with complete confidence, and will be more prone to make mistakes.
Baseball is a much more mental game than any other sport. Unlike other sports, in baseball you have some time to think about your next move; the game doesn’t run at the speed of some other sports. When a player has a distraction in his head, it’s much more likely to impact a player in baseball than in any other sport.
With the Phillies all but out of the playoff picture, its time for Charlie Manuel to get a look at some of the younger players in the team’s system to get an idea of what he has to work with in 2013. Kendrick has struggled heavily as a starter this year (2-8 record, 5.01 ERA in 15 starts), but has been steady coming out of the bullpen (2-1 record, 3.95 ERA).
Manuel should remove Kendrick from the rotation, keep him in the bullpen, and call up a young prospect, such as Tyler Cloyd, to take his place as the fifth starter.
Cloyd has had a fantastic season in the minor leagues, with an 11-1 record and 2.12 ERA. Many fans have hoped that the Phillies would give the young pitcher a look this season, but they’ve been reluctant to do so. The Phils don’t trust Cloyd because he doesn’t throw hard, the right-hander rarely surpasses 90 mph. He’s successful because of his control, but the team doesn’t think his minor league success will translate into the major leagues.
While I agree with the team’s assessment of Cloyd’s big-league potential, I do believe they should call the kid up and give him a shot. He’s had such a great year in the minors, I think he’s earned a handful of big-league starts. Why not give him a chance at this point? The Phillies know what Kyle Kendrick is at this point, and with the team out of the playoff picture there’s no reason to keep him in the rotation.
Maybe Cloyd falls on his face in the majors, and maybe he succeeds. The Phillies won’t find out by keeping him in the minor leagues, and they certainly don’t have anything to lose by giving him (and others) a try.
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