It doesn't look like Kyle Hendricks will be starting the 2014 season in Chicago. The Cubs assigned the 24-year-old right-hander to minor-league camp Saturday.
Hendricks is the closest to the big leagues of the Cubs' pitching prospects, but it was already assumed he would begin the year in Triple-A Iowa. Despite a stellar 2013 season (13-4, 2.00 ERA, 1.06 WHIP), Hendricks' resume only consists of six starts above Double-A.
After an eventful offseason that included a degree from Dartmouth and a trip to the Cubs' rookie-development program in January, Hendricks made three starts in spring training, totaling eight innings.
The Cubs acquired Hendricks from the Rangers in the Ryan Dempster deal at the deadline in 2012. He has walked just 58 batters in 349.2 career minor-league innings.
With Jake Arreita likely to start the season on the disabled list, the Cubs have yet to announce their fifth starter. If they need more reinforcements in the rotation, Hendricks will be just one phone call away.
The Cubs' roster now stands at 53 in big-league camp.