The Washington Nationals have no shortage of elite pitching, so it is no surprise to see three Nationals at the top of the Cy Young odds sheet.
The Washington Nationals have a three-time Cy Young award winner on their staff, and a few other elite pitchers looking for their first.
Posted on OddsShark.com are the favorites to win the National League Cy Young award, and the Washington Nationals have three of the top nine players.
Scherzer posted league-leading numbers last season in innings pitched (220.2), strikeouts (300), strikeouts per nine innings (12.2), hits allowed per nine innings (6.1) and WHIP (0.911).
All around, Scherzer is a stud. No doubt about it. He is the clear favorite to win the award, and deservingly so.
However, does he have a teammate that can challenge him for the award?
For Strasburg to win, the answer is boring, cliche, but true: He needs to stay healthy.
Talent wise, Strasburg is as good as any pitcher in baseball. The problem is that Strasburg has not pitched 200 innings in a season since 2014. In fact, that is the only season in which he threw more than 185 innings.
The talent is there; Nats fans see it each season. However, when Strasburg is starting only 25 games in a season, it makes it impossible for him to win over enough voters.
He has only garnered Cy Young votes in 2014 and 2017. To get votes in 2019, he needs to stay healthy, and pitch like the Nationals know he can.
Corbin, on the other hand, is a bit more of a wildcard. He exploded onto the national scene after setting career-best marks in K/9 (11.1) and ERA (3.15). It earned him an all-star appearance in what would become his new stomping grounds.
What is tricky about handicapping Corbin is the uncertainty surrounding his game. Was his 2018 season a one-time deal?
Corbin is coming from an extreme pitcher’s park in Arizona to a more hitter-friendly park in D.C.
Overall, the N.L. West has three or four of the best pitcher’s parks in the MLB (San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego). Last season, the home offenses in AT&T (now Oracle) Park and Petco Park were anything but menacing.
Could a change in scenery weaken Corbin’s performances?
On the flip side, Corbin may have simply broken through. His slider is one of the best pitches in baseball, and his increased strikeout rate is a great thing to see in today’s MLB. The upside is indeed there, but absolutely everything will need to go right for Corbin to win the Cy Young.
Regardless of which National wins the Cy Young award, if it happens at all, the Nats have one of the best rotations in the MLB and will be a nightmare for the rest of the league to confront.