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Ian Kennedy

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Subject: List of Arizona Diamondbacks Opening Day starting pitchers, 2011 Arizona Diamondbacks season, 2012 Los Angeles Dodgers season, Max Scherzer, 2011 Los Angeles Dodgers season
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Ian Kennedy

Ian Kennedy
Ian Kennedy during his tenure with the Diamondbacks.
San Diego Padres – No. 22
Starting pitcher
Born: (1984-12-19) December 19, 1984
Huntington Beach, California
Bats: Right Throws: Right
MLB debut
September 1, 2007, for the New York Yankees
MLB statistics
(through August 28, 2015)
Win–loss record 74–64
Earned run average 3.93
Strikeouts 1,096
WHIP 1.27
Career highlights and awards
Ian Kennedy
Medal record
Men's baseball
Competitor for  United States
World University Championship
Gold medal – first place 2004 Tainan Team

Ian Patrick Kennedy (born December 19, 1984) is an American professional baseball pitcher for the San Diego Padres of Major League Baseball. He has previously played for the New York Yankees and Arizona Diamondbacks.

Kennedy attended the University of Southern California (USC), where he played college baseball for the USC Trojans. He made his MLB debut with the Yankees in 2007, and was traded to the Diamondbacks after the 2009 season. Kennedy played for Arizona through 2013, when he was traded to the Padres.

High school

Kennedy attended La Quinta High School in Westminster, California.[1] In his junior year, he was named CIF Division IV co-most valuable player, and earned the Orange County Register and Garden Grove League most valuable player honors, when he recorded 13 wins and led the county with a 0.38 ERA (five earned runs in 9023 innings) and strikeouts (168) while batting .373 with seven home runs and 31 RBI.[2] In his senior year, he earned All-CIF Division IV honors.


Kennedy went on to play college baseball for University of Southern California. In Kennedy's first year at USC, he went 7–2 in 16 games, with a 2.91 earned run average (ERA) and one save. He pitched 9223 innings, struck out 120, and walked 31. He also gave up 86 hits and allowed 34 runs, 30 of which were earned runs.

In his sophomore year, he went 12–3 in 18 games, with a 2.54 ERA and one complete game. He pitched 117 innings, struck out 158 (fourth-best in team history), and walked 38. He also gave up 171 hits, and had 33 earned runs out of 40 runs allowed.

As a junior at USC he pitched in 16 games, 15 of them starts. He went 5–7 with 102 strikeouts and posted a 3.90 ERA. He pitched 10123 innings, walked 38, and gave up 44 earned runs. Entering his senior year, Kennedy was 24–12 in 50 games, pitching 31113 innings. He had a strikeout total of 380, an ERA of 3.12, and had walked a total of 107 batters.

In 2005 Kennedy made the USC single-season strikeout list, striking out 158 batters, fourth on the list, behind Mark Prior, Seth Etherton, and Walt Peterson. Kennedy has a 12.15 strikeouts per nine innings ratio, which is fifth best in his school's history. He was also selected for the U.S. National Team twice. Kennedy was named a first-team All-American after both his freshman and sophomore years, and was also named to the Preseason All-American first team in 2006 and the USA's Junior National Team in 2002. In 2005, he became the eighth pitcher in USC history to be named the Pac-10 Conference "Pitcher of the Year."

Professional career

Minor leagues

Kennedy was drafted by the New York Yankees in the first round (21st overall) of the 2006 Major League Baseball Draft, earning a $2.25 million signing bonus.[3] "I would like to go out and play," he said, "start my professional career. The earlier the better. I imagine it's not going to be very long before I start. At least that's what I'm hoping. If it does take a while, I'm ready for that – but I want to go out and play." He consistently throws his fastball around 91–92 mph, he is known for his pitching finesse to retire hitters.[4]

Kennedy was previously drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 14th round (425th overall) of the 2003 Major League Baseball Draft, but he didn't sign with them. He joins Randy Johnson, Mark Prior, Tom Seaver, and Barry Zito on the list of pitchers drafted out of USC.[5]

Kennedy pitched 2.2 innings for the Staten Island Yankees of the New York-Penn League, a short-season class A league, in 2006. In 2007, he began the season with the A Tampa Yankees of the Florida State League, posting a 6–1 record with a 1.29 ERA in 63 innings, while striking out 72 and only walking 22. He was promoted to the AA Trenton Thunder of the Eastern League, where he posted a 5–1 record with a 2.59 ERA in 48.2 innings, while striking out 57 and only walking 17.

On July 24, 2007, Kennedy was promoted to the AAA Scranton/Wilkes Barre Yankees. He posted a 1–1 record there with a 2.08 ERA in six starts, striking out 34 and walking just 11 in 34.2 innings.

New York Yankees

Kennedy made his major league debut with the New York Yankees on September 1, 2007 in place of Mike Mussina, to whom he is often compared.[6] He earned the win, allowing three runs (only one earned run) in seven innings, striking out six, walking two, and allowing five hits. Kennedy said before his first game:

On November 28, 2007 Kennedy was named the 26th best prospect by Minor League Baseball's official website.[8]

Despite having been replaced by Kennedy in the rotation in 2007, Mussina became a mentor for Kennedy and other young pitchers on the Yankee roster even requesting that Kennedy and Phil Hughes receive lockers next to his during 2008 spring training.[9]

On May 4, 2008 Kennedy was demoted to AAA Scranton/Wilkes-Barre after a poor start to the 2008 season. Ian dominated in his first start back with AAA Scranton/Wilkes Barre, tossing 7.1 innings of 1-hit ball while striking out eight.

On May 28, 2008, after enduring a strained right lat muscle, and being diagnosed with bursitis behind the scapular, Kennedy was placed on the DL, expected to miss at least 15 days. He returned to the AAA affiliate of the New York Yankees, struggling in his first few starts before going on a three game tear. From July 19 to 29, Kennedy pitched 20 innings, allowing 7 hits which yielded 3 runs, while collecting 14 Ks, and walking only 4. On July 24, Kennedy had another no-hitter broken up, after pitching a dominant 623 innings.

Kennedy made his return to the major leagues on August 8, starting in place of an injured Joba Chamberlain. After a poor outing against the Angels, in which he surrendered 5 runs in 2 innings, Kennedy was optioned in favour of Billy Traber on August 10.[10][11]

Kennedy was diagnosed with an David Cone's procedure on an aneurysm in 1996.[12]

On September 19, Ian Kennedy was called up from the minors. On September 23, Kennedy made an appearance against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. He hit one batter and walked two others, but allowed no hits while pitching a scoreless 8th inning.[13]

Kennedy was not on the post-season roster for the Yankees during their run towards winning the 2009 World Series.

Arizona Diamondbacks

In December 2009, Ian Kennedy went to the Diamondbacks in a three-way trade with the Detroit Tigers and the Yankees, in which Detroit received Austin Jackson and Phil Coke from the Yankees and Max Scherzer and Daniel Schlereth from the Diamondbacks, the Yankees received Curtis Granderson from the Tigers, and the Diamondbacks also received Edwin Jackson from the Tigers.[14]

In Kennedy's first appearance for Arizona, he pitched two scoreless innings in a rain-shortened game. He got his first win as a Diamondback on April 29, going 8 innings, while allowing 6 hits which led to 4 runs and striking out 6. On August 26, Kennedy struck out a career-high 12 batters, while allowing only 1 hit and 2 walks in 7 innings against the San Diego Padres. Despite posting an ERA of 3.80 and pitching in 194 innings, his record stood at 9-10 in 32 starts.

Kennedy was named the Diamondbacks' 2011 Opening Day starting pitcher. [15] Kennedy would lead the Diamondbacks from last to first place with a break out season that had him win 21 games for the first time in his career and the first in the National League to do so that year.[16] His season .840 win-loss percentage was the best ever for a Diamondbacks pitcher,[17] and he placed fourth in the balloting for the Cy Young Award.

During the 2011 NLDS, Ian Kennedy started Game 1 but lost that game. The Diamondbacks eventually lost the division series to the Milwaukee Brewers in 5 games.

Kennedy was not as stellar in 2012 as he was in 2011, with a record of 15–12 with a 4.02 ERA.

On June 11, 2013, Kennedy was ejected from a game against the Los Angeles Dodgers after hitting both Yasiel Puig in the nose and Zack Greinke in the shoulder with pitches, the second of which ignited a bench-clearing brawl.[18] He was suspended 10 games by MLB for the incident, the first pitcher to get that type of suspension in eight years.[19] He began the 2013 season 3-8 with a 5.23 ERA in 21 starts with the Diamondbacks.

San Diego Padres

On July 31, 2013, Kennedy was traded to the San Diego Padres for Joe Thatcher, Matt Stites, and a compensatory draft pick.[20] Kennedy was immediately added to the Padres rotation. He started 10 games for the Padres, going 4-2 with a 4.24 ERA and 55 strike-outs in 5713 innings.

In the 2014 season, Kennedy reached 200 strikeouts for the first time in his career, becoming the fourth Padres pitcher to reach that mark and first since Jake Peavy did it in 2007.

Pitching style

Kennedy throws two fastballs (four-seam, two-seam) around 90 mph (tops out at 95 mph), a high-70s knuckle-curve, a mid-80s cutter, and an above-average Vulcan changeup.[21][22][23]

Personal life

In October 2007, Kennedy married USC basketball player Allison Jaskowiak in a ceremony outside of St. Louis. None of his teammates on the Yankee playoff roster could attend the wedding as they were in the middle of the playoff series against the Cleveland Indians. Kennedy said of his wedding:

After the two were wed, the couple walked up the aisle to "Take Me Out to the Ballgame".[24]

Kennedy and his wife, Allison, have four daughters: Nora (born in May 2011), Renee (born in June 2012),[25] Lydia (born in February 2014), and Evelyn (born in July 2015).

He is 6' 0" tall and weighs 190 pounds.[26]


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External links

  • Career statistics and player information from MLB, or ESPN, or Baseball-Reference, or Fangraphs, or The Baseball Cube, or Baseball-Reference (Minors)
  • NY Yankees Press Release: "Yankees select right-handed pitcher Ian Kennedy in 1st round of 2006 First-Year Player Draft"
  • news New York Yankees News "USC's Kennedy is Yankees' Top Pick"
  • Ian Kennedy Scouting Report On

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