Kyle Kendrick looking to keep momentum against Bucs


Aug 27, 2014; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Phillies starting pitcher Kyle Kendrick (38) pitches during the first inning of a game against the Washington Nationals at Citizens Bank Park. Mandatory Credit: Bill Streicher-USA TODAY Sports

When the Philadelphia Phillies send right-hander Kyle Kendrick to the mound they are often unsure what the outcome will be.

The last time Kendrick pitched he pleasantly surprised many, going seven innings strong with no earned runs against the Atlanta Braves.  So far he hasn’t given up a run in September after allowing 17 earned in August and 27 in six July starts.

Monday night Kendrick faces the Pittsburgh Pirates for the first time since 2o12.  That season he appeared in three games against them, once as a starter, going 0-1.  He compiled 8.1 innings in that time and gave up six earned runs on seven hits including two home runs.  Pedro Alvarez has two home runs against him and is 3-for-7 lifetime against the Phillies’ starter.

The Phillies will see the ball out of a lefty’s hand Monday night as Jeff Locke toes the rubber for Pittsburgh.  In his last start, Locke (6-4, 3.75) struggled in three innings against the St. Louis Cardinals.  The southpaw needed 86 pitches to record nine outs, giving up five runs in the process.  Against the Phillies on July 6th, Locke went eight innings and gave up two runs, but only one was earned.  Marlon Byrd hit a solo home run against his former teammate in that 6-2 Pirates’ win and is 2-for-4 lifetime against the 26-year-old pitcher with three RBIs.

Byrd will play right field and bat fifth, just below Ryan Howard in the four spot.  Howard is batting .239 against lefties in 2014 with nearly three times as many at bats against right-handers, in which he has a .221 average.  The first baseman has a double and two strikeouts against Locke.

Maikel Franco will bat eighth for the Phillies after going 0-for-3 in Sunday’s series finale against the Washington Nationals.  Franco is 1-for-11 to start his big-league career.

Pirates lineup:

Marte LF

Snider RF

McCutchen CF

Walker 2B

Martin C

Davis 1B

Mercer SS

Morel 3B

Locke P

Phillies lineup:

Revere CF

Rollins SS

Utley 2B

Howard 1B

Byrd RF

Ruf LF

Ruiz C

Franco 3B

Kendrick P