(bisons.com) - In a rotation filled with great pitchers, Liam Hendriks is making his case for being the best of the bunch.
It was another Hendriks show at Coca Cola Field in a 6-1 Bisons win over Charlotte, Thursday night at Coca-Cola Field. The Australian cruised through a Bisons' season high seven innings of work to give the Herd its fourth win in five games. As was the case during the first month of the season, Hendriks was in complete control as the Bisons opened up May with a victory. The righty allowed just one run on six hits while striking out five batters to become just one of five pitchers with four wins in the international league.
"If you go out there and give up one run in seven innings that's pretty darn good," said skipper Gary Allenson. "Liam set the tone. He got ahead [of hitters] and threw strikes."
"Going seven with one run, I'll take that any day," said Hendriks.
The righty didn't have a problem setting down the Knights early in the game. Hendriks needed just 26 pitches combined to retire Charlotte in the first three innings.
Hendriks even used his pickoff move to perfection, as he was able to catch both Blake Tekotte and Jared Mitchell sleeping at first base.
"I didn't think that my pickoff move was that good," said a laughing Hendriks. "It worked tonight which I'm pretty happy about. I got the ball over there quickly and was just trying to keep the guys off balance."
The only run Charlotte could must against Hendriks came via a fourth inning home run from Matt Davidson, his third of the season. However, the Knights were able to end Hendriks' walkless streak at 28.2 innings when Tyler Saladino drew a free pass in the seventh. At that point, no pitcher in affiliated baseball has thrown more innings in 2014 without a walk.
"I was kind of disappointed with the walk, but now its time to start a new one and we'll see where this one takes me," said Hendriks.
On the offensive side, Kevin Pillar led the way again for the Herd as he extended his hitting streak to 13 games in the win. Pillar doubled home Ryan Goins and Munenori Kawasaki to get the Bisons on the board in the third. Pillar then plated Darin Mastroianni on a fielder's choice in the fifth for a 3-1 advantage.
The Bisons added three insurance runs in the eighth inning as Erik Kratz and Kawasaki doubled on consecutive pitches.