With just nine days left in the season, it’s do-or-die time for some teams while others are happily contemplating how to spend their winters. For bettors it’s time to really give some thought to who is going to be taking home those individual awards this year.
Bovada released its latest odds for MVPs and CY Young winners on Monday. Here’s a look at the Cy Young odds. These findings might surprise you, but then again, they might not.
Dickey Favorite in NL Cy Young Race
Knuckleballer R.A. Dickey is now considered the favorite (4/5) to take the National League Cy Young Award.
The righty has been one of the few bright spots for a New York Mets team that has struggled for the better part of the season. Almost unthinkably, Dickey has compiled a 19-6 record on a team that has only gone 70-83. His 2.66 ERA is best amongst NL starters and his strikeouts (209) second behind Clayton Kershaw (211). Still, playing on a losing side could hurt his chances in the long term.
Washington’s Gio Gonzalez is a close second (5/4) behind Dickey, at least in the eyes of the oddsmakers. Gonzalez leads the NL with 20 wins (compared to eight losses) and is ranked fourth in both ERA (2.84) and strikeouts (201). Having led the Nationals to the postseason for the first time in more than two decades, he’ll be given a lot of consideration by voters.
Atlanta closer Craig Kimbrel takes the third spot (5/1). The bullpen guy has converted 39 of 42 save attempts, registering a 2-1 record with an ERA of 1.08. The righty has been essential for the Braves who are getting closer and closer to that Wild Card berth. But will the voters consider a closer as a legitimate contender?
Price Edging Weaver in AL Cy Young Stakes
David Price has led an impressive Tampa Bay rotation all season and is now considered the favorite (10/11) to take home the American League Cy Young award.
The lefty has compiled a 18-5 record, with those 18 wins good enough for second behind L.A.’s Jered Weaver (see below). Price’s ERA is a miniscule (by AL standards) 2.58 and easily the best in the league. 188 strikeouts is good enough for sixth place on the list.
Price’s edge is slim though. Jered Weaver is hot on his heels with odds of 11/10 to take the award. Weaver has been outstanding for the Angels this season and you could easily make the case that without the right-hander, the Angels would not still be in the hunt for postseason play. His 19 wins (compared to four losses) have been invaluable.
Weaver’s also put up an impressive ERA of 2.74, good enough for third in the league. If there’s a downside for Weaver in the eyes of the voters, it’s that he’s only scored 136 strikeouts, good enough for just 23rd across the league. Another knock could come if the Angels fail to make the postseason, although that’s certainly something facing David Price too.
Third on the list of oddsmakers favorites is Detroit’s Justin Verlander. The reigning Cy Young award winner and MVP has had another impressive season tallying a 16-8 record with an ERA of 2.72, good enough for second in the league.
Verlander’s strength in voter’s eyes will be his strikeout tally (231) which is tops in the league, ahead of team mate Max Scherzer (228). Another key figure is the number of innings he’s pitched. Verlander leads the league with 231.1 innings pitched, which is nearly 11 more than second place Felix Hernandez (220.2) and almost 20 ahead of third place James Shields (212.1). That’s an extra 2-3 games he’s effectively thrown. Still, it is unlikely he’ll be favored for the second straight year, especially if the Tigers fail in their bid to catch the White Sox for the AL Central.
Finally, Fernando Rodney is 5/1 to take the award. There’s no denying that the Tampa Bay closer has been outstanding this year. He’s converted 44/46 saves and added a pair of wins to boot. His miniscule ERA of 0.64 is simply ridiculous. But, like Kimbrel in the National League, how likely is it that voters will go with the closer over a starter?