When Ian Kennedy was announced as the Diamondbacks' number one man in the rotation there weren't a lot of people who took much notice. Somebody had to be first, but it's not like Kennedy could stand up to the other aces of the NL West. Kershaw (LA), Jimenez (CO), Latos (SD) and Lincecum (SF) are some of the best pitchers in the game today and Kennedy is...well, he's a nice guy who can give you a decent start.â†µ
After tonight however, that thinking probably hasn't changed much at all. It was just one game, but boy, was it a nice one. Eight full innings with nine strikeouts, one run, and just one walk improved his ERA to 2.57 on the season.â†µ
Kennedy is now sporting a reddish colored beard that staff ginger, Barry Enright, encouraged him to grow. Perhaps there's something to "fearing the beard" but Ian gave more credit to the game called by his catcher, Miguel Montero.â†µ
It was clear that Kennedy had good stuff going and was particularly effective with his off-speed pitches. He threw several in a row and was able to work his changeup both in and out of the zone. The powerful Reds lineup were never able to get a read on him despite seeing 73 out of 104 pitches thrown for strikes.