OSS: Kyle Hendricks threw a Maddux in my heart
- Kyle Hendricks had his best start of the season, going the distance with seven strikeouts, no walks and six baserunners. He probably should have got the Maddux, but some miscommunication between Heyward and Zobrist in the ninth turned a lazy pop fly into a leadoff double for the Phils. Hendricks now has a 2.93 ERA and 2.74 FIP to go along with a 20.3% strikeout rate and 6.4% walk rate on the season. There was some reason to doubt that he would even get a rotation spot going into the year, but now he is nine starts into the year with stats even better than last year's. Perceptions are starting to shift and maybe people will stop treating him as the prototypical fifth starter that you're more than happy to skip when there are off days.
- Jason Heyward had a great day at the plate, doubling in his first two PAs. The first one was kind of bloop-y, but the second was a laser beam that got to the wall in no time at all.
- Ben Zobrist is so hot that the Iranian nuclear program monitors might want to check his bat to see if he has a miniaturized thermonuclear device inside. He picked up two more hits today, including a double that scored Heyward in the first.
- The only big complaint was the Heyward/Zobrist ball lost in the sun/miscomunication in the ninth that blew the shutout. They're both new to the Cubs, and Maddon mentioned it as a teachable moment in his postgame presser. Luckily the Cubs already had a big lead, 4-0 might as well be 40-0 against the Phillies offense. SouvenirCity on the twitters wondered if something like that had ever happened in a no-hitter, and I imagined the late Milt Pappas going supernova on the mound if that instead of Bruce Froemming had happened.
- Hendricks was thrown out at home to end the second, in what was probably a bad send. Luckily he did not try to slide or anything, and may have had an outside chance at being safe it the call was reviewed.
Striking out on a wild pitch is probably the best way for Ryan Howard to drive in a run from third nowadays.
— Ari (@AriJordan_) May 28, 2016
Next up: The Cubs go for the sweep tomorrow afternoon with Hammel on the mound vs Vince Velasquez. 1:20 PM CT.