Cubs News

Kyle Hendricks sums up his struggles with Cubs: ‘I gotta be better and prove it’

1 month agoTony Andracki

For Kyle Hendricks and the Cubs, it’s pretty simple when it comes down to it.

“We need better results, frankly,” manager Craig Counsell said after the Cubs’ 6-3 loss to the Marlins Sunday afternoon at Wrigley Field.

Hendricks took the mound for the 5th time this season, looking to turn his year around after a really tough start.

There were some positives and steps in the right direction but at the end of the day, the veteran right-hander lasted just 4 innings, surrendering 6 hits and 4 runs in that time.

He struck out 5 batters, did not walk anybody and also limited the hard contact. Hendricks did allow a 460-foot homer to Marlins right fielder Jesus Sanchez in the 2nd inning, but other than that felt like he made some good pitches even if the results weren’t always there.

That included the 4th inning, where the Miami lineup ambushed Hendricks. He allowed 4 straight singles on 4 straight pitches and then induced 3 groundouts. The contact wasn’t lighting up Statcast metrics but they still found grass.

“Gotta take the positives again — progress,” Hendricks said. “Just got beat like 5 pitches in a row there, first-pitch hunting, mostly fastballs. But still executed a lot.

“Mentally, more aggressive, on the glove. Just put us in a bad spot again. We had to win that game to take that series. So a lot of disappointments but I gotta still focus on the positives — the mental approach that I took out there and executing on the glove was better.”

[WATCH: Kyle Hendricks discusses his outing vs. Marlins]

The Cubs (13-9) had a chance to win the series against the lowly Marlins (6-17) but the 4th inning proved to be the difference. Hendricks is now 0-3 on the season with a 12.00 ERA and the team has lost 4 of his 5 starts.

Hendricks has always been somebody who takes pride in going deep into games and helping give the bullpen a rest. So even though he had only thrown 56 pitches Sunday, he managed to make it through just 4 innings, leaving 15 outs for the bullpen to cover.

“Of course I want to go as deep in the game as possible,” Hendricks said. “But when you’re not getting the results and giving up runs — that’s a game we had to get. … I gotta be better and prove it to get those opportunities.”

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Moving forward, Hendricks felt like he was more aggressive and had a better gameplan and mindset out on the mound.

Now it’s just about carrying that over to the next outing and waiting for the results to follow.

“We have to keep putting our heads together on the best way to get Kyle locked in and how we can help him do that,” Counsell said. “And we’re going to continue that discussion.”

The Cubs have not announced their rotation for the series against the Houston Astros at Wrigley Field later in the week.

Assuming he stays on the same schedule, Hendricks will likely pitch next in Boston over the weekend.

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