Ryan Hendrix dominated out of the bullpen for the Daytona Tortugas in 2018. He posted a 1.76 ERA in 44 games, picking up 12 saves in 51.0 innings with 26 walks and 79 strikeouts. He also only allowed two home runs on the season.
As you’d imagine after that kind of season, the Cincinnati Reds promoted him to the Double-A Chattanooga Lookouts to begin 2019. The first three games of the season were all scoreless innings, but Ryan Hendrix struck out just one batter and walked three in that stretch. But things turned around quickly the rest of the month on that front. In the next five games he would throw 7.1 innings without an earned run, walk two batters, and strike out 14. For the month he posted a 0.00 ERA with 15 strikeouts and five walks in 10.1 innings for the Lookouts.
That final inning of April would be the last inning that the right-handed reliever would throw for a while. On May 2nd he would be placed on the injured list with a right elbow strain. He wouldn’t pitch again for nearly three months, returning on a rehab stint with the Arizona League Reds on July 23rd. Over that final week of July he pitched in four games for the Reds rookie level affiliate, striking out eight batters and allowing just one hit in 5.0 innings.
The first outing back with Chattanooga for Ryan Hendrix went well, kicking off August on the 3rd with a shutout inning of work. But the second outing went about as poorly as you could imagine. He faced four batters, gave up three hits, and walked another batter before being removed from the game. All four runners would score. He’d bounce back the rest of the way, though. In the final six appearances of the year he’d allow just one run in 8.0 innings, walk one batter, and he struck out seven. That one poor outing led to a 5.00 ERA on the month with three walks and eight total strikeouts.
For all 2019 Season Reviews and Scouting Reports – click here (these will come out during the week throughout the offseason).
Ryan Hendrix Scouting Report
Position: Right-handed pitcher | B/T: R/R
Height: 6′ 2″ | Weight: 185 lbs | Drafted: 5th Round, 2016
Born: December 16, 1994
Fastball | The pitch works in the 93-96 MPH range.
Curveball | A power 12-6 curve that works in the mid-80’s. It’s a plus offering.
It wasn’t long ago that when 93-96 MPH and touching higher would leap off of the scouting report at you. It’s still above-average velocity, but it’s not quite what it used to be, either. For Ryan Hendrix, his above-average fastball isn’t his best pitch. That would be his curveball, which is an above-average offering on it’s bad days, and a plus offering a large majority of the time. It’s a true swing-and-miss pitch.
The one area that Hendrix has struggled in his career has been keeping his walk rate low. He’s always countered that by striking out tons of hitters. Still, his walk rate is, and has been a bit higher than you’d typically want to see. The last two years it’s improved after reaching the high water mark with Daytona in 2017 when he walked 14.5% of the hitters he faced.
At his best, he profiles as a back of the bullpen kind of pitcher. With the concerns with the walks a safer bet is more likely as a strong 7th/8th inning guy. He’s going to miss a ton of bats. And historically he’s kept the ball in the park. He’s given up just eight home runs in 172.2 minor league innings.
Interesting Stat on Ryan Hendrix
He only faced 98 hitters on the year due to the elbow injury. But those 98 hitters were completely overmatched. Hendrix held opposing batters to a .172/.255/.218 line on the year. He gave up just 11 singles and four doubles on the year.
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