The 2017 MLB schedule heads into the final few weeks of the regular season as teams fight for their playoff lives. While teams fight for playoff spots, individual players from both the American League and National League each look to solidify their own number lines in order to take home one of the many top Awards in all of Major League Baseball.
One of those Awards that will be handed out is the Cy Young Award which is awarded to the top pitcher in both the American and National League. Now this year’s competition is intense in both leagues with no real clear cut winner for either league.
Now Corey Kluber is looking to push his way to the leaderboard in the American League, while many experts have Clayton Kershaw as the favorite to take home the Cy Young Award in the National League. That being said, let’s take a look at both the American and National League Cy Young Candidates.
American League Cy Young Candidates
Corey Kluber, Cleveland Indians: Kluber has been dominating all season long en route to his 17 wins. Along with leading the American League in wins, Kluber also holds the lead in Earned Run Average with a 2.35 mark in 27 starts this season. Other key stats include Kluber allowing opposing hitters to hit just .188 against him this season to go along with a .85 WHIP while striking out 252 batters. On a side note the Indians have lost just seven of his 27 starts this season, in six of those seven starts the team failed to score more than three runs.
Chris Sale, Boston Red Sox: After spending big to acquire Sale this offseason, the Red Sox have been rewarded with a Cy Young type performance from Sale. He entered his start against the Baltimore Orioles on Wednesday Night tied for second in the American League with 16 wins, second in earned run average with a 2.86 mark and first in all of baseball in strikeouts. Sale also entered that start needing just 13 more strikeouts to reach the 300 mark this year, the first player to do that since 1999 when Pedro Martinez accomplished the feat. Fast forward to now and Sale has 17 wins and 300 strikeouts this year while seeing his earned run average drop to 2.75 after allowing just four hits to the Orioles.
National League Cy Young Candidates
Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers: Luckily for Kershaw this award is handed out before the post season and not after. Entering Wednesday, Kershaw sat as the leader in era in the National League with a 2.26 mark while sitting tied for the lead in wins with 17. Other key stats for Kershaw this season is his 194 strikeouts in just 163 innings of work as well as a commanding .93 WHIP. One thing to remember when looking at Kershaw’s numbers this season is the fact he missed time again with a back injury. Add that with the fact that the Dodgers have lost just four of the 25 games Kershaw has started this season and that warrants him a top candidate for the award.
Max Scherzer, Washington Nationals: For Scherzer the only thing that might be holding him up from taking home another Cy Young Award is the fact he has just 15 wins on the season. With that said, Scherzer has still be one of the best starters in all of baseball through this point of the season. That success has showed up as he leads the National League with 253 strikeouts, 2nd in earned run average with a 2.59 mark and sits fourth in wins. In those six losses, the Nationals failed to score more than two runs in three of those outings.
Zack Greinke, Arizona Diamondbacks: When you lead the National League in wins as well as help your team make a push for the playoffs despite not being one that was expected to compete, your name will be brought up for awards. That is the case for Greinke as he is tied for the National League lead in wins with 17, sits fifth in earned run average with a 2.87 and is tied for the lead with a 6.6 WAR. In his six losses, the Diamondbacks have scored just a combined seven runs total.
Gildshire Magazines‘ predictions:
American League Cy Young Winner – Corey Kluber
National League Cy Young Winner – Clayton Kershaw