After dropping the first two games of the series with the Astros, the Cubs send starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks to the bump for tonight’s contest.
After the Cubs blitzkrieg to the top of the NL Central, they have cooled a bit of late, going 4-6 in their last ten games and losing three straight games. It’s safe to say the Cubs need to turn things around before receiving a much-needed off day on Thursday ahead of their series with the Cardinals in St. Louis.
Who better of late to send to the mound than Kyle Hendricks? Hendricks has been “average” from a full-season perspective, but of late has been sensational. On the season, Hendricks is 4-4 over 62.0 innings with a 3.34 ERA and 54 strikeouts. However, in his last seven outings, Hendricks is 4-1 with a 2.77 ERA and 44 strikeouts over 48.2 innings.
“The Professor” has been taking opposing hitters to school as of late and looking like the player that the Cubs expect to see, especially after locking him up to a multiyear extension at the beginning of the season. Hendricks will need to bring that stellar performance that fans have seen over his last seven starts into tonight’s tilt against the Astros.
As of late, Cole Hamels and Jon Lester have both struggled and come back down to Earth a bit after their hot starts. Although Yu Darvish has improved and Jose Quintana has been average, Hendricks is the one pitcher the Cubs seem to be able to count on for a great start lately. A big Kyle Hendricks win to avoid being swept would be a great way to head into the off day.
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