The Chicago Cubs’ Yu Darvish and Kyle Hendricks are critical to the playoffs. When you’re done with them, where are you going to go now?
The Chicago Cubs’ Kyle Hendricks has been outstanding on the mound. Yu Darvish has been good for seven straight starts for more than a month, culminating in an NL Pitcher of the Month for August. But after that–Jon Lester? Alec Mills?
It’s not like Lester and Mills have been bad. They’re over .500. Okay, 8-6 in 21 games started. But that’s what you get if the offense isn’t giving you runs. Lester and Mills have 28 and 27 runs, respectively. The RA9 (Runs allowed per 9) for Lester is 4.40, Mills a 4.14–higher than those guys ERA.
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Back to Darvish and Hendricks. Hendricks has been on-point in his last start against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Still, it ended in a loss. He pitched 7 2/3 innings of two-run ball and got the defeat. He went against Trevor Williams, who got the win in 5 2/3 innings, allowing one earned run. You see the difference there?
Darvish is 0-2 in his last three games. But he didn’t get a run in two of them. He has 25 strikeouts in 19 innings pitched. Still, Darvish needs to hope for runs if he wants to beat the Chicago White Sox.
He beat the Sox at Wrigley Field in a 2-1 win. Darvish pitched seven innings of one-run ball, striking out 10. He will need to be as good–if not better–to take out the White Sox.
Let’ face it. It will need to be 1-0 or 2-1 when facing top of line starters. Or they’ll need to slam the door closed when facing the ‘back of the rotation’ guys. Either way, that’s how it’s ‘scripted’ to go. Maybe the blinders will come off, and they will be relevant again. The latter is fine with me. I can handle that.