By Stuart Kirsch
NL Cy Young Odds Tracker: Shuffling at the Top
The three favorites in the 2020 NL Cy Young Award race persist at the top of the odds books: reigning champ NY Met Jacob deGrom, and Reds’ hurlers Sonny Gray and Trevor Bauer. As the disturbed 2020 season moves past the one-third marker of the 60-game schedule, the names remain the same, only the odds and order have changed.
Trevor Bauer has been the most impressive, although in limited action. Between extra rest and cancelled games on the Reds’ schedule, Bauer has not started a game in a week and a half. In three quality starts, he is 2-0 over 19.1 innings, with 0.93 ERA, giving up only two runs on seven hits. He has fanned 32 batters versus four bases on balls, throwing over 100 pitches in each start, including a seven-inning, complete game as part of a double header.
Until he toes the rubber, he will not have pitched enough to be qualifying in the stats leaders. Bauer has made as much news of late throwing shade at others in the game as he has from the mound, but analysis shows some of his success is due to an increased spin rate on his pitchers, and more reliance on his fastball and cutter. Bauer’s odds for the Cy Young award also show some increased spin, now at +400.
NL Cy Young Odds: Gray and deGrom just off the top
Reds’ pitcher Sonny Gray is one of two four-game winners in the National League. Gray’s outstanding pitching hit a bump in his previous start, but returned to form in a ten-strikeout, one-run appearance in an 8-1 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Gray was spotting his fastball well and was touched for a Bryan Reynolds solo homerun among five hits in 6.2 innings. Gray leads the league in strikeouts with 45, and his odds to win the 2020 Cy Young award are +500. Overall he is 4-1 with a 2.05 ERA.
Don’t sleep on Jacob deGrom, even if he may be having trouble sleeping with neck stiffness. deGrom remains at 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA and 28 strikeouts in his four starts. His odds to retain his Cy Young title have lengthened slightly to +500.
Yu Darvish enters the Cy Young conversation
After getting roughed up in his first start, the Chicago Cubs’ veteran righty has reeled off four straight wins, lasting six plus innings in each and offering up no more than a single run. He’s been touched for only a single gopher ball in his five starts and has managed a steady decrease in his ERA to 1.80. Darvish gave up eight hits in his six-inning win over the Cards, but was helped out by the double play ball and seven strikeouts to stay out of danger. With Cy Young odds at +1500, Darvish is 4-1 with 34 total strikeouts over 30 innings.
Best ERAs are in Atlanta and San Diego
Max Fried of Atlanta is the NL ERA leader sporting a 1.24 mark to go with his 3-0 record. The lefty tossed six and a third scoreless innings against the Marlins, but left with a no decision following a blown save in the eventual Braves’ 2-1 victory. Fried has struck out 28, but given up 17 hits and nine walks in his 29 innings of work. Fried’s Cy Young odds are +1200.
San Diego’s Danielson Lamet’s odds remain at +2200, even as he has given up only a single run in each of his five starts. He was the tough luck loser in a 5-1 loss to the DBacks, surrendering his one run on a solo jack by Kole Calhoun. Lamet is 2-1 on the season and his ERA is 1.59, behind just Fried.