Around the Hill Question of the Week: Who will win the AL-NL Cy Young Awards?

By David Minster, National Sports Editor

This season, a current Boston Red Sox pitcher and a former one will win the AL and NL Cy Young awards. In the American League, Rick Porcello is having a stellar season in Boston and is leading the league with 21 wins. With a WHIP under 1.00 and a solid ERA close to 3.00, Porcello is leading the Red Sox into the playoffs atop the AL East. While many of his wins can be attributed to Boston’s bats, which have scored the most runs in the league, Porcello is still playing extremely well and, hopefully for Boston fans, his success will translate into playoff success.

In the National League, former Red Sox star and current Cubs ace Jon Lester will most likely win the NL Cy Young. While he doesn’t have nearly as many strikeouts as the Nationals’ Max Scherzer, who is also contending for the award, Lester’s low ERA will propel him ahead of Scherzer in the voting. Lester and his teammate Jake Arrieta both have 17 wins and are leading the Cubs to the best record in the MLB, giving both of them a little more weight when voting starts. Lester has been dominating for the last few years, whether it be in Chicago, Oakland or Boston, and this year is no exception. He’s been an ace wherever he’s played, and this year he’ll be awarded with the NL Cy Young award to add to his amazing feats. Look for both Rick Porcello and Jon Lester to be hoisting the AL and NL Cy Young awards this year.

By Charlie Enberg, Maroon-News Staff

Rick Porcello is a safe prediction for the AL Cy Young award. Going just by the numbers alone, he makes an extremely solid case: 21-4 record (1st in AL), 3.08 ERA (3rd), and 0.98 WHIP (1st). While those numbers are clearly the most important, Porcello has also proven he is a durable pitcher that can last deep into games. He is tied for second in AL innings pitched this season at 210.2 and is one inning behind David Price sitting in first. Finally, the Red Sox sit at 86-64, with a comfortable lead in the AL East. The combination of Porcello’s impressive pitching stats and durability and the performance of the Red Sox, makes him an ideal candidate for the AL Cy Young award.

The National League Cy Young prediction is a little tougher to make this year. In the beginning of the season it looked like Jake Arrieta was going to be the obvious choice as he ended the month of May with a 9-0 record coupled with a 1.56 ERA, but since then he has dropped off with numbers not nearly as impressive as earlier this season. While Arrieta was going through a minor slump, his teammate Jon Lester picked up the slack and boasted impressive numbers, not losing a game since the beginning of July. Since then he has been on an 8-0 run and has only given up twelve total runs bringing his ERA down to 2.40 and his record up to 17-4. Though this is a tough pick, I am going with Jon Lester for the NL Cy Young Award because of his recent stellar performances.

By Theo Asher, Maroon-News Staff

If I were making this prediction at the midseason mark, Kluber would not even be in the discussion. On July 4, Kluber was mired in inconsistency, with an 8-8 record and 3.79 ERA. Critics began to doubt his status as an ace with this mediocre statistical profile, especially considering he had signed a lucrative five-year, $38.5 million extension with the team back in January. Since then, however, Kluber has been nothing short of brilliant.

Starting at the beginning of July, he has a 9-1 record and 2.07 ERA, not pitching less than six innings once. He is now in the topfive of almost every pitching category in the AL, with his 6.4 Wins Above Replacement (WAR) leading all of MLB pitchers. He also has the Indians sitting atop the AL Central. The Indians are seriously contending for not just their first division title since 2007, but potentially the second championship for the city of Cleveland this year. While Kluber has put the pedal-to-themetal in the second half of the regular season, Max Scherzer has been remarkable since Opening Day. The man with two differentcolored eyes (heterochromia iridium) leads the NL in wins (17), WAR (6.3 – 1.0 higher than next closest NL pitcher), WHIP (0.93), and strikeouts (a ridiculous 259), and he sits in the top-six of every other major statistical category. He has been everything the Nationals wanted this season in a sevenyear, $210 million man, helping them to the second-best record in baseball and ensuring their third division title in the past five years. Not to mention, on May 11, he achieved the godlike feat of striking out 20 batters in a single game, which hasn’t been accomplished since 1998.