The MLB trade deadline is in the past, which means we are rapidly nearing the playoffs. And with that comes awards season.
While the MVP races appear to be wrapped up, two awards that are in heavy contention are the Cy Young for both leagues.
Will Shohei Ohtani be able to win both the Cy Young Award and American League MVP? Or will Gerrit Cole finally take home the hardware?
How about the National League? Can the Atlanta Braves’ Spencer Strider win the Cy Young in only his second season? Or is the scorching hot Blake Snell going to snatch the award for a second time?
Let’s look at the odds for the Cy Young Award for both leagues.
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American League Cy Young Award Top 5 odds*
Gerrit Cole: -300 (bet $10 to win $13.33 total)
Kevin Gausman: +400 (bet $10 to win $50 total)
Framber Valdez: +950 (bet $10 to win $105 total)
Luis Castillo: +1500 (bet $10 to win $160 total)
Shohei Ohtani: +4000 (bet $10 to win $410 total)
National League Cy Young Award Top 5 odds*
Zac Gallen: +175 (bet $10 to win $27.50 total)
Logan Webb: +300 (bet $10 to win $40 total)
Blake Snell: +320 (bet $10 to win $42 total)
Spencer Strider: +600 (bet $10 to win $70 total)
Justin Steele: +700 (bet $10 to win $80 total)
*odds as of 8/14/2023
In the wide-open NL Cy Young race, Spencer Strider is currently a favorite to win the award. The second-year player leads the majors with 208 strikeouts to go along with 12 wins, an astonishing 14.4 strikeouts per nine innings and a 3.61 ERA.
“Strider’s fastball and slider combo is usually stuff seen only in elite closers,” FOX Sports MLB Analyst Rob Friedman wrote in July. “His slider is an elite pitch and has over a 57% whiff rate, while his fastball is one of the best in baseball among starting pitchers, averaging above 97 mph with over a 30% whiff rate. Even Strider’s third pitch, his change-up, has a 50% whiff rate.”
As long as the Atlanta Braves keep on winning and Strider keeps throwing strikes, look for him to remain a favorite.
Right on Strider’s heels is Zac Gallen, who is looking to become the third Diamondback to win the award (Randy Johnson 1999-2002, Brandon Webb 2006). Gallen was blazing in the first half of the season and was the early favorite, but he has since cooled off a tad bit. However, with 11 wins, 157 strikeouts and a 3.37 ERA, he has been one of the best pitchers in the game.
“For a good part of the season, Zac Gallen has been one of the best pitchers in the NL,” Friedman punctuated. “He’s tied for the MLB lead in wins with 11 and is one of the best pure ‘pitchers’ in baseball. If you love watching pitching, Gallen is a treat.”
Rounding out the top contenders of the NL is Blake Snell. Snell has been torrid the last few months with a league-leading 2.61 ERA. If he keeps up that pace, he is certainly a contender to take home his second Cy Young award in six seasons.
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The current favorite to win the AL Cy Young award is Gerrit Cole. The New York Yankees’ ace has been dominant this season with 10 wins, 157 strikeouts and a 2.64 ERA. While the Bronx Bombers have been a disappointment, Cole has been sensational and, at these odds, seems likely to win his first Cy Young award after being the runner-up two twice.
One dark horse worth considering in the AL is Shohei Ohtani. The superstar is all but a lock to win the AL MVP, but he will need some help to get the Cy Young this season.
Ohtani posts a 3.32 ERA with nine wins and 160 strikeouts, but his Angels are fighting for a playoff spot, and it seems unlikely for a team outside the playoffs to have both the league MVP and CY Young winner on its roster.
Perhaps even more concerning is the fact that Ohtani might be falling victim to the Drake Curse!
Since Drake was seen wearing Ohtani’s jersey, he has gone 2-for-12 from the plate with seven strikeouts. On the bright side, he did pitch four scoreless innings in that time.
The recent struggles are probably due to some minor injury issues he’s dealing with, but you can never have too much information when it comes to betting, right?
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