Lost in the Los Angeles Angels‘ struggles to start the 2014 regular season has been the lack of production from second baseman Howie Kendrick.
Through three games this season, the 30-year-old has yet to record a hit and has three strikeouts in 10 official at-bats. This is an ominous slow start for Kendrick who typically begins the year off to a good pace at the plate. Last season he hit .272 (3-for-11) with one home run, one RBI, two runs scored and two walks through three games played.
It is also of a bit head-scratching beginning to the year for the former All-Star given that he had a productive spring training, batting .386 with one home run, nine RBIs, two triples and 12 runs scored in 20 games played last month. This also included recording a hit in six of the last seven games prior to the start of the start capped off by a three-hit game against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Kendrick is entering his ninth season in the majors, so that makes this slow start something much out of the norm for the career .291 hitter. If anything, he has been one of the Angels’ most consistent batters since he made his debut in the 2006 season, hitting at least .279 in each year.
With all that said, expect Kendrick to bounce back from his struggles as he and his teammates look to get it going after being swept by the Seattle Mariners in the opening series of the season. It has not only been Kendrick who has struggled out of the gate, but also the entire offense outside of Mike Trout. Albert Pujols, Raul Ibanez, Erick Aybar and David Freese have a combined six hits in 43 at-bats between them.
These types of numbers and results will provide a much-needed sense of urgency and boost to the Halos as they look to turn it around as soon as possible.