With Cliff Lee on the disabled list with a strained left oblique muscle, Kyle Kendrick has been asked to take his spot in the rotation.
His first start was a disaster. In three innings, he allowed seven runs on 11 hits in a 9-5 loss to the Diamondbacks.
In Sunday's 5-1 loss to the Cubs, Kendrick was much better.
Even though he was credited with the loss, Kendrick pitched well enough to earn a win. Once again, the Phillies failed to score runs, albeit against a great performance from Matt Garza.
Kendrick tossed six innings of three-run (only two were earned) ball in the loss. He allowed five hits and one walk while matching a career high with seven strikeouts.
This is a good sign for the Phillies, as Lee is unlikely to make his next scheduled start on Friday of next week. With Kendrick pitching well in the loss, the Phillies can feel confident about throwing him out there again.
Even with Lee in the rotation, though, the Phillies have been no better at earning wins. The team is 0-3 in games started by Lee and 0-2 in games started by Kendrick. The offense has not done nearly enough to allow either pitcher to earn victories, though each respective starter has pitched well enough to get the win.
Kendrick's next scheduled start is Friday against the Nationals, and it should prove to be difficult yet again for the Phillies to score against the league's best pitching staff.