“Shall we play a game?”

By Blaidd Drwg

“How about global therm0nuclear war?”

No, well how about this?

Let’s say the season ended on September 3rd and we were going to vote on the Cy Young Award. Here are the AL WAR leaders according to Baseball-reference. Com:

1.

Sale (CHW)

6.2

2.

Scherzer (DET)

6.0

3.

Iwakuma (SEA)

5.5

4.

Hernandez (SEA)

5.2

5.

Sanchez (DET)

5.0

6.

Darvish (TEX)

5.0

7.

Quintana (CHW)

4.1

8.

Kuroda (NYY)

4.0

9.

Holland (TEX)

3.9

10.

Buchholz (BOS)

3.9

Let’s assume that is all of the contenders for the award. It is a pretty big spread between 6.2 WAR and 3.9 WAR, so let’s eliminate anyone with a WAR below 5.0. That leaves us with this:

1.

Sale (CHW)

6.2

2.

Scherzer (DET)

6.0

3.

Iwakuma (SEA)

5.5

4.

Hernandez (SEA)

5.2

5.

Sanchez (DET)

5.0

6.

Darvish (TEX)

5.0

While Iwakuma’s total numbers are good, he really has been pretty pedestrian since about mid-June, so let’s take him off the list. Besides, Felix is really the guy you would rather have on the mound for the Mariners anyway. I am going to eliminate Sanchez for a similar reason – he isn’t the best pitcher on his team. That leaves us with Chris Sale, Max Scherzer, Felix Hernandez and Yu Darvish.

Here is how they stack up:

W-L ERA SO WHIP ERA+
Chris Sale 10-12 2.97 199 1.055 144
Max Scherzer 19-2 2.88 209 0.940 146
Felix Hernandez 12-9 3.01 200 1.132 122
Yu Darvish 12-6 2.73 236 1.025 151

While Felix is having a good season, he hasn’t been dominating, so he probably finishes #3 or #4 in the voting with Chris Sale occupying the other spot. Sale has been outstanding, but voters will be turned off by his 10-12 record. That leaves it as a battle between Scherzer and Darvish. Both pitch for teams that are heading to the playoffs. Scherzer has benefited from outstanding run support, but he has also been pretty dominating in his own right – his WHIP leads the AL (Darvish is 3rd), he is giving up just under 6.3 hits per 9 innings (Darvish leads the AL with 6.1 per 9), he has a 4.5 to 1 strikeout to walk ration (good for 5th in the AL, Darvish is 8th at 3.9) and has the highest WPA of any starting pitcher in the AL. With how close the stats are between Darvish and Scherzer, it is going to come down to wins for the voters and that 19-2 record looks awfully nice, so Scherzer would win the award.

Given that, I have no idea what Jim Leyland is complaining about.

Maybe a nice game of chess is in order.

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