Chicago Cubs: Hendricks gets better as the game goes on
Hendricks has experienced his own troubles in 2018, holding an 8.00 ERA in the first inning. Unlike Quintana, though, Hendricks actually gets better as the game goes on. His ERA is 4.13 (innings 1-3), 3.76 (4-6) and 2.45 (7-9), respectively.
Hendricks would give the Cubs longevity no matter where he is in a potential postseason rotation. For this writer though, his high first-inning ERA is too troublesome to start the Cubs’ first playoff game.
I am probably overthinking things when it comes to Hendricks, but ultimately the Cubs have three great choices to start Game 1 of the postseason. Hamels’ success with the Cubs is important, however.
It’s not just that Hamels has been the Cubs’ best starting pitcher since joining the team. It’s that he’s been one of the best starting pitchers in all of MLB, as well.
If Hamels continues performing at or near the level he is currently on, the Cubs would be foolish to not give him the ball in Game 1 of the playoffs. That is a big if, but unless he starts to struggle, he is the most logical choice.