Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports
Ian Kennedy turns 29 today. He is in no way “old”, although his stats trending downward have led a lot of people to believe that he is older than he really is. This trend downward allowed the Padres to acquire him at the trade deadline for Matt Stites and Joe Thatcher. This was a very small price to pay for someone who was previously traded for several players including Max Scherzer and Edwin Jackson.
I say all of this to say that “IPK” received his birthday present last July when he came to the Padres. He has a career 0.90 GB/FB ratio. His present obviously would be coming to play in Petco. He gives up more flyballs than the average MLB pitcher. This is probably why his ERA dropped almost a full run after coming over from the D-Backs. Whether it was the confidence boost he received from pitching in Petco or the things that the Padres coaching staff may have worked on him with, there is clear evidence that fans could be receiving a birthday present this season. Kennedy’s numbers after the move to San Diego were a 4-2 record, 4.24 ERA, 1.343 WHIP, 55 K, 25 BB over 57.1 IP. IPK’s numbers at home were even better: 4-2 record, 3.06 ERA, 1.26 WHIP with 53 Ks in 47 innings.
When you add in the fact that Kennedy is known for being a workhorse, there is a lot to look forward to. Depending on how many starts Kennedy gets in Petco, people may stop being so concerned about the downward trend in his stats. He’s only 29 after all! Now it’s time for him to go out and show that he’s still got a lot left in the tank.