most recent major-league stint lasted less than 24 hours, and his development is far from complete. After being recalled from triple-A Lehigh Valley on Friday afternoon and losing Friday night's 13-inning game against Boston, the righthander was optioned back to Lehigh, and lefthanded reliever
Kendrick won 21 games for the Phillies in 2007 and 2008, but did so primarily with his sinker. Demoted in spring training with orders to work on his change-up and cutter, Kendrick was earnestly engaged in that process when Scott Eyre strained his left calf Thursday night in New York. That injury resulted in an emergency call-up.
"When Kyle left spring training, [pitching coach] Rich Dubee and the staff set out a plan," said assistant general manager Chuck LaMar, who oversees the Phillies' minor-league system. "It was obvious to everyone that to be a major-league pitcher, his sinker needed to improve, plus his secondary pitches."
LaMar said that Kendrick was committed to the program, though still awaiting major strides. "The sense in the organization is that he is diligently working on it," said LaMar. "I can't say that he's made significant progress, but he has done everything we've asked of him. It is a slow process, and it is not going to happen overnight."
Dubee, who had not seen Kendrick pitch since March, did not notice progress Friday night, but noted the difficulty of the situation. (Kendrick entered an extra-inning game against Boston.) "No, but it's not fair to judge his secondary stuff in that scenario," Dubee said, adding that the demotion was not a result of Friday's loss; rather, the team needed another pitcher, and Kendrick would not have been available after pitching two innings.
"This had nothing to do with performance, and that's what we told Kyle," Dubee said. "This would have happened regardless of how well he pitched or how poorly he pitched. He wasn't going to work on his secondary stuff sitting in the bullpen here."
The pitching coach said that Kendrick's three-run 13th inning Friday came as a result of overthrowing his sinker, which prevented the pitch from sinking. "He has to learn how to control his sinker and not throw through his sinker," Dubee said. "That's why the ball got elevated."
Two of the Phillies' top prospects - and potential trading chips in the team's search for a starting pitcher - are injured. Triple-A shortstop
is set to have surgery on a torn meniscus in his left knee early this week, and is expected to miss three to four weeks. Catcher
is on the 15-day disabled list with a bruised right foot.
potential game-winning home run to right in the 11th inning Friday a foul ball, then denied
request for a replay review. Yesterday, Manuel seemed to question both calls. "The ball left the park fair," Manuel said. "When the ball leaves the ballpark, that's when it [replay] should be called."