Feeling better, Kendrick hopes to stay with Phils

Feeling better, Kendrick hopes to stay with Phils
September 21, 2013, 7:30 pm
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In his last 14 starts Kyle Kendrick is 3-9 with a 6.45 ERA. (USA Today Images)

Kyle Kendrick has been on a shoulder-stretching program since he was scratched from his scheduled start on Wednesday. The right-hander says his shoulder already feels better, but he has no qualms with the organization’s decision to shut him down for the remainder of the season.

“We’re trying to be smart about it,” he said Saturday.

Kendrick was examined by specialist David Altchek in New York on Thursday.

“He agreed with our doctors,” Kendrick said. “There’s a little bit of rotator cuff tendinitis. There’s also some tightness in the shoulder capsule. That’s why he doesn’t want me to throw because I could end up hurting my elbow.”

The Phillies have a decision to make on Kendrick this offseason as he is eligible for salary arbitration for the final time. The 29-year-old pitcher will get a raise from the $4.5 million he made this season, but how much of a raise could determine his future with the club. If the price goes up too much, the Phils have to consider whether they want to keep Kendrick.

Earlier this season, retaining Kendrick seemed like a slam dunk. He went 7-4 with a 3.46 ERA in his first 16 starts. In his last 14 starts, however, Kendrick is 3-9 with a 6.45 ERA.

“My second half wasn’t great, but I wasn’t fully healthy,” Kendrick said.

Given the Phils’ lack of starting pitching depth, it would not be surprising to see the club tender Kendrick a contract this winter. Maintaining control of Kendrick would allow the club to keep him or trade him. The Phils would get nothing if they let Kendrick walk.

“I’ve been in this position every year since I became arbitration eligible,” Kendrick said. “Will I be traded? Non-tendered? It’s kind of the same as in the past.

“Hopefully I’ll be here. Knock on wood, I’ve been durable.”

In seven seasons, Kendrick had never missed a start before Wednesday. Rest and rehab are expected to bring a full recovery.

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