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Chicago Cubs: Hendricks has been terrific this season at 11-7

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Jul 26, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks (28) throws a pitch against the Chicago White Sox during the first inning at U.S. Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 26, 2016; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Kyle Hendricks (28) throws a pitch against the Chicago White Sox during the first inning at U.S. Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Chicago Cubs’ starting pitching rotation has been on quite a roll of late. In the last 29 games, according to the Chicago Tribune, the Cubs have gone 21-8 and the Cubs starters ERA has been an outstanding 2.40 since July 10th.

Everyone has been looking at the numbers for Jake Arrieta who has an ERA of 2.55. But the surprise of this season has been the pitching of the 5th pitcher in the rotation, Kyle Hendricks.

This has been a kind of breakout year for Hendricks who is currently 11-7 with a club leading 2.19 ERA, third best among starters in the National League.

Lately, Cubs manager Joe Maddon has been delighted with Hendricks’ starts giving him some love during a recent  post-game press conference. Maddon has been happy with all of his starters lately. “They’ve been fantastic. They’ve been on quite a roll and it’s been really fun to watch,” he said to the Chicago Tribune.

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Hendricks has been hot this summer. From July 1st through August 1st, he has had the best ERA in the league at a measly 1.00.

Hendricks is in his third season with the Cubs and his second since being put in the starting rotation. Last season he went 8-7 with a 3.95 ERA. So far, this season he has been considerably improved.

Kyle went to college at Dartmouth and was in the Texas Rangers organization when he was obtained by the Cubs in a trade at the end of 2012 trade deadline. He made his major league debut in 2014 and pitched well that summer.

This summer in 2016, he is pitching great. Hendricks throws an array of pitches at varying speeds, none of them lights out. He relies on his ability to vary speeds and location. Hitters are off balance and can’t seem to put good wood on the ball.

Hendricks is happy with the season and to be on a good staff. “We’re feeling good with the group, passing the baton, whatever saying you want to use.”, Kyle told reporters.

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The starting rotation has a team ERA of 2.2 and is the lowest in the league. Their OpBA (Opposition Batting Average) is an impressive .210. That is a primary reason the Cubs have the best record in the majors (75-43) and lead the National League by 12.5 games.

We’re heading toward the home stretch. If the Chicago Cubs make the post-season, and it’s looking more likely the team will do that, Maddon has some decisions of who to start for the playoffs.

So far, Hendricks is making it hard to keep him out of the mix.

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