Sunday, August 30, 2009

NL Cy Young Award

NL Cy Young Contenders
Chris Carpenter (Cardinals): 14-3, 2.20 ERA, 115 SO, 25 BB
Tim Lincecum (Giants): 13-4, 2.33 ERA, 222 SO, 54 BB
Adam Wainwright (Cardinals): 16-7, 2.47 ERA, 164 SO, 57 BB

Longshots
Josh Johnson (Marlins): 13-3, 3.03, 149 SO, 41 BB
Matt Cain (Giants): 12-4, 2.50 ERA, 141 SO, 63 BB
Dan Haren (D-Backs): 13-8, 2.78 ERA, 180 SO, 29 BB

There are plenty of other NL pitchers having good seasons, such as Wandy Rodriguez (Astros)and Joel Pineiro (Cardinals), but I don't think there are any serious contenders beyond the six listed above.

Carpenter and Lincecum are each having historic seasons as of now:
13+ Wins, 2.33- ERA, .765+ W-L%, 4.11+ K/BB

Besides Carpenter and Lincecum this year, these numbers have only been equaled only 16 times since 1900, naturally by very good pitchers: Sandy Koufax and Pedro Martinez (3); Greg Maddux and Christy Mathewson (2); Cy Young, Walter Johnson, Denny McLain, Randy Johnson, Bret Saberhagen, Juan Marichal (1).

This is a difficult award to predict and it seems likely that one of them will have historically great numbers and lose. Adam Wainwright seems the most likely to get to 20 wins and one bad outing could damage a really good ERA to make it seem more mundane. It is a pretty tight race right now, I think, and a very interesting story line to follow.

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