From the beginning, Ruben Amaro Jr. made it clear that Kyle Kendrick would return to the Phillies. Today, that became a reality as the two sides avoided arbitration. Kendrick inked a one-year, $7.675 million contract with incentives that could push the total salary higher.
Kendrick, 29, was Jekyll & Hyde last season, starting off with an impressive stretch of starts in April and May in which he compiled seven straight outings of six innings or more and two runs or less. Included was a complete game shutout at Citi Field on April 26.
But the wheels fell off and Kendrick’s ERA – which sat at 2.82 in mid-May – ballooned to 4.70 by seasons end.
Overall, it was an uninspiring 2013, but a 10-13 record with a 1.0 WAR gets you nearly $8 million per season in this insane new MLB. Kendrick will likely slot in as the third or fourth starter with rotation-mates Cliff Lee, Cole Hamels, and Roberto Hernandez. The final spot is certainly up for grabs with Miguel A. Gonzalez getting a look during spring training, as well as Jonathan Pettibone.
While it would seem to be a ridiculous amount, it’s actually the going rate for a pitcher of Kendrick’s ilk. The issue with the fan base seems to be that the Phillies continue to count on players that have led to their downfall over the past two seasons.