Posts Tagged ‘Cy Young’

Justin Verlander, MVP?

September 19, 2011

Yesterday Justin Verlander earned his major league leading 24th Win of the season. With his enormous number of Wins (24), Innings Pitched (244.0) and Strikeouts (244), and his miniscule ERA (2.29), Verlander should be the consensus AL Cy Young and could easily win the Triple Crown. However, are these the only accolades Justin Verlander’s fantastic 2011 campaign deserves? Is Verlander the AL MVP?

It is no question that the playoff bound Detroit Tigers’ Most Valuable Player is Justin Verlander. When Verlander starts, the Tigers are 25-8, a .757 Win-Loss Percentage. That is .224 percentage points higher than the Tigers 64-56 (.533) record in games started by other pitchers. What is even more amazing is Justin Verlander’s shut down performance against the top eight sluggers in the AL (Jose Bautista, Jacoby Ellsbury, Curtis Granderson, Dustin Pedroia, Adrian Gonzalez, Alex Gordon, Ian Kinsler and Howie Kendrick). In 10 startsagainst these sluggers Verlander has only allowed 3 Hits! Check out how Verlander has befuddled the League’s best bats. (Granderson’s, Kinsler’s, Pedroia’s and one of Ellsbury’s hits were against Detroit relieves)

DET Pitching in Verlander's Starts: Hits (Blue), RBIs (Orange) & Total Bases (Green)

With the Red Sox’s rapidly losing their grip on the Wild Card (eliminating Pedroia, Ellsbury and Gonzalez), the irrelevance of Bautista’s Blue Jays and Curtis Granderson’s low batting average of .268, Justin Verlander is emerging as a legitimate MVP candidate. Does Verlander’s historic and dominant regular season make him the American League’s Most Valuable Player?

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Cliff Lee: Cy Young Favorite?

September 7, 2011

Since pitching his Major League record tying sixth shutout of the season on Monday night, Philadelphia pitcher Cliff Lee has gone from a NL Cy Young hopefully to a full-fledged favorite. Lee’s 2011 numbers are fantastic but he does not lead the National League in any major pitching categories, besides shutouts. The Lefty’s 2.47 ERA is third, his 1.07 WHIP is third, his 5.10 Strikeout to Walk ratio is second and his 16 wins and 21 Quality starts are both tied for third amongst NL starting pitchers.

So what has propelled Lee to the top of the NL CY Young discussion? His amazing months of June and August. Check out Lee’s numbers by the month.

ERs Allowed (Blue), Strikeouts (Orange) & Walks (Green)

In June and August Lee won all ten of his starts and had an unbelievable .33 ERA. While Lee’s rough months of May (2-3, 3.78 ERA) and July (1-2, 4.91 ERA) provide evidence for his detractors, his ability to consistently bounce back from adversity gives further credence to Lee’s claim for the top pitching honor.

Lee has only allowed two Earned Runs since August 1st. If he continues this nearly unprecedented dominance over the last three weeks of the season will he pass perennial front runners, Roy Halladay and Clayton Kershaw, and collect his second Cy Young Award?

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Will The Tigers Clench The AL Central?

September 6, 2011

Yesterday marked the beginning of the final series that the Indians will host their AL Central rival, the Tigers, at Progressive Field. The Indians, who are 6.5 games behind the first place Tigers, have a 5-1 record at home versus the Tigers. Although the Indians have played well during their last few sets, the Tigers have remained hot. American League Cy Young candidate, Justin Verlander, is scheduled to pitch during Wednesday’s game, which will likely cause the Indians to struggle. Verlander has a 1.75 ERA over his last 19 turns. Take a look at how the Tigers have faired at Progressive Field. Should the Tigers sweep the Indians, will this mark the end of the playoff hopes for the Tribe?

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AL Cy Young Race

August 31, 2011

Last night CC Sabathia finally got the Red Sox monkey off his back. With a dominant two Earned Runs and 10 Strikeout 6.0 inning performance, Sabathia (18-7, 2.99 ERA) has reasserted himself into the AL Cy Young Conversation. However, Sabathia will be fighting an uphill battle against the perennial Cy Young front runners Justin Verlander (20-5, 2.38 ERA) of Detroit and Jered Weaver (15-7, 2.28 ERA) of the Los Angeles Angels. Compare the three Aces’ numbers:

ERs Allowed (Blue), Strikeouts (Orange) & Walks (Green)

With one month left in the season Justin Verlander appears to be pulling away from the pact.  Verlander is leading the Majors in wins (20), Strikeouts (218) and WHIP (0.90) and tied, with Sabathia, for the AL lead in pitching WAR with 6.2.  Can Sabathia or Weaver catch Verlander down the stretch?

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Kershaw Still Strong

August 30, 2011

Although the Los Angeles Dodgers playoff hopes have dwindled, Clayton Kershaw is still playing strong and remaining a top contender in the NL Cy Young race. Kershaw won his 17th game this season during last night’s game against the Padres. Not only winning the game, Kershaw pitched his fifth complete game of the season. The pitcher has the potential to bring some much needed cheer to Dodger Stadium: Kershaw is on track to become the first Dodger pitcher to achieve 20 wins since Ramon Martinez in 1990. He could also potentially be the first Dodger starter to bring home the Cy Young award since Orel Hershiser in 1988. Click on the charts below to take a look at some of Kershaw’s stats.

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D’backs’ Kennedy On Top

August 29, 2011

Diamondbacks’ pitcher, Ian Kennedy, won his 17th game yesterday making him the NL’s first 17-game winner. The pitcher, who is in the running for the Cy Young award, has been on a roll allowing no more than nine runs in his previous nine starts. With their win against the Padres, the Diamondbacks increased their lead in the NL West to four games. Take a look at how Kennedy and the rest of Arizona’s pitching staff is performing this season.

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Verlander: A Pitcher to Watch

August 23, 2011

During yesterday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays, Detroit Tigers’ starting pitcher, Justin Verlander, became the first 19-game winner in the major league. His 19th win equals his career high, which he established in 2009. Verlander, who’s currently 19-5, leads the American League in wins, strikeouts, innings pitched, and winning percentage and has the second best ERA. Take a closer look at Verlander’s stats. Do you think he will be this season’s Cy Young award?

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