Max Scherzer, 2015
Stats: 33 games (33 starts), 228.2 innings pitched, 14-12 record, 2.79 ERA, 2.77 FIP, 0.918 WHIP, 276 strikeouts, 34 walks, 27 home runs, and an opponent’s slash line of .208/.242/.358
Awards: All-Star, 5th in Cy Young voting
"“Guys, I’m speechless about that. I don’t know what to say. You go out there and try to have as much success as possible. You try to accomplish as much as you can and do everything you can. … To have that happen twice in a season, it’s special. And when you start talking about the history of the game, you can’t even really think about that. That’s why I’m speechless.” – Max Scherzer after throwing his second no-hitter of the season, 2015 (h/t Adam Rubin, ESPN)"
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When you sign a pitcher to seven-year, $210 million contract, you’d hope that he’d put together multiple seasons that could regarded as the best in team history.
Two years into his record-setting deal, that’s exactly what Max Scherzer has done. While his 2016 campaign may garner him his second career Cy Young award, it was his first go-around that was truly special.
Put aside the 14-12 record for a second. In 2015, Max had a better ERA, FIP and WHIP while allowing less walks and home runs than he did in 2016. He threw two no-hitters, struck out 16 or more hitters in a game twice, and tied for the major league-lead in complete games with four.
The Washington Nationals may not have made the postseason with Max at the forefront of the rotation, but they might not have even been over .500 without him