As baseball season takes its turn into the playoffs, the American League Cy Young battle continues. Chris Sale of the Boston Red Sox and Corey Kluber of the Cleveland Indians are the top contenders for this honorable award.
Sale has had a fantastic season, ending with a regular season record of 17-8, an ERA of 2.90, 308 strikeouts, and a 0.97 WHIP. Kluber’s numbers have also been nothing short of outstanding, as his regular season record was 18-4, with an ERA of 2.25, 265 strikeouts, and a 0.87 WHIP. As you can see, their statistics are very close so it will be a close race.
My thoughts on this have been back and forth all season, because in the first half of the season prior to the All-Star break, I thought Sale was going to run away with the Cy Young Award. However, after the All-Star break, he had a few rough starts on the mound where he gave up more earned runs in one game than he ever has, so the second half of the season has not been a cakewalk for him.
Kluber was on the DL from May 2nd until June 1st, and since then has been nothing short of stellar. He has proven himself as Cleveland’s ace, and should be of major help during the postseason. When examining all of the statistics and thinking about the season as a whole, I predict that Kluber will win the Cy Young Award this season.
The Chris Sale that fans have in their heads is post-All-Star break Chris Sale, which is the one that included more losses and bad starts than in the beginning of the season. The one thing he does have on Kluber, though, is an impressive 308 strikeouts in the regular season. The last pitcher to ever do that was former Red Sox pitcher Pedro Martinez, who reached 213 in 1999.
Both of these guys have incredible season statistics, and it will be a very close vote, but my best guess is that the numbers will end in favor of Corey Kluber.