Kyle Kendrick (7-9, 4.12 ERA)
Kyle Kendrick has been the man for the Phillies of late. He is riding a three game winning streak, and has lowered his ERA nearly a whole run in the process. Given Kendrick’s long track record of futility this recent stretch has to be a mirage, like a pool of fresh water in the middle of a desert. However, as long as Kyle continues to have confidence in his fastball he might actually become a serviceable starter…NAHH.
Jonathan Niese (10-7, 3.51 ERA)
Niese has been a workhorse for the Mets, tossing nearly 160 innings already, and should eclipse 200 by the end of the year. The biggest difference with the lefty has to be his schnoz. Niese got a nose job this year to trim down his giant nose. The reduced gravitational pull from the middle of his face has undoubtably had a positive impact on the mound. As a fellow New York resident I understand the pressures to look good and stay fashionable. He may not be a GQ model, but it’s a step in the right direction.
Thursday’s game would be a good opportunity for Charlie to give Polanco some at bats. Placido is hitting .344 in his career against the southpaw (11-32) with a .900 OPS. Polanco has become a forgotten man on the Phillies roster, but the man can still hit lefties.
Conversely, Utley and Howard are hitting a combined .103 (3-29) against Niese. Sleep in boys, today is not your day.
David Wright is one player who should be looking forward to facing Kendrick. Wright is hitting .344 with 2 dingers against the righty. Kendrick isn’t the only victim of Wright’s hot hitting, as he is hitting .286 with 6 HR and 24 RBI. Don’t feel bad Kyle, no one can get this guy out.