Braves: Does Spencer Strider have a case for the NL Cy Young?

cfm23042402028 marlins at braves

A few weeks ago, I’m not sure much of a case could have been made for Spencer Strider as the National League Cy Young award recipient.

Sure, the strikeout numbers have been absurd all year long, but the second-year starter was coming off arguably the worst start of his short career against the lowly Pittsburgh Pirates, surrendering six earned runs and failing to make it out of the third inning. His ERA was approaching 4.00, and Vegas had him as high as 10/1 odds to take home the award.

It was officially a long shot, but Strider’s buckled in over his last three starts and thrown his name right back into the hat. He’s gone at least seven innings in each outing — the first time he’s done that three starts in a row in his career — allowing just one run over 21 innings with 25 strikeouts. Now, Strider is sitting with the second-best odds of anyone to take home his first Cy Young.

Odds via Draft Kings: 

The voting for this award will be by far the most intriguing of any this year because a lot of it will come down to what the voters prefer.

If you like strikeouts and advanced metrics, Spencer Strider is a slam dunk. He leads the National League in wins, strikeouts, strikeout rate, K/9, FIP and WHIP. He’s also by far the most entertaining pitcher to watch in the conversation. However, that might not be everyone’s cup of tea.

Blake Snell is pacing the National League in ERA at 2.73, followed closely by Justin Steele at 2.80. Spencer Strider is currently 8th in the category with a 3.46 ERA, trailing a couple of his own teammates in Bryce Elder and Charlie Morton. Meanwhile, there’s Zac Gallen, the current favorite for the NL Cy Young. He offers a bit of the best of both worlds, ranking 4th in ERA at 3.11, while striking out 179 batters over 168 innings.

It will also be interesting if team success is taken into account. As I previously mentioned, Spencer Strider is pacing the league in wins, and his team is the best in baseball, while the other two favorites might miss the playoffs entirely. There’s no doubt Strider will have to end the season on a strong note, but if his recent form is a sign of things to come, there’s a fantastic chance that the Braves could end up taking the NL MVP and Cy Young awards home, which hasn’t happened since 2013 when Miguel Cabrera and Max Scherzer did it..

Photo: John Adams/Icon Sportswire


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