Feb 21, 2012; Lakeland, FL, USA; A major league baseball sits in the grass as Detroit Tigers catchers participate in drills during spring training at Joker Merchant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

2013 NL Cy Young Contenders

Oct. 2, 2012; Miami, FL, USA; New York Mets starting pitcher R.A. Dickey (43) throws during the second inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

The Cy Young is the pitcher’s MVP Award. The Cy Young Award has only had 16 multiple winners. The most recent being ’08-’09 winner Tim Lincecum. So it’s a rarity we same the same person win the award. Just look at last season’s winner, former Mets pitcher and current Toronto Blue Jays pitcher, 38 year old knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. Beginning of the season, no one had Dickey winning the Cy, and no one (at least in the NL) will have him winning it this season. Instead..

Clayton Kershaw  – Los Angeles Dodgers : Kershaw has already one Cy Young under his belt, back in 2011 when he won 21 games and posted a suffocating 2.28 ERAm which lead the NL. Kershaw also lead the NL in ERA last season, with 2.53. The southpaw is one of the most dominant pitchers in not only the Nl, but the majors period. Being fully healthy this season, expect 2013 to be no different than the last two.

Stephen Strasburg – Washington Nationals: Strasburg was limited last season coming off Tommy John, but there will be no innings limit this season. Yes, fun. Strasburg went 15-6 last season and posted a 3.16 and struck out 197 batters, good enough for 7th in the NL. Despite being shut down early, Strasburg still was in the conversation for the Cy Young. With World Series aspirations and not having to worry about being shut down, expect Strasburg to come out and flat out dominate batters in 2013.

Matt Cain – San Francisco Giants: Matt Cain surpassed 2 time Cy Young Award winner Tim Lincecum has ace of the San Francisco Giants pitching staff. Cain posted career numbers in wins (16) and ERA (2.79),  and also got the starting nod in the All-Star Game for the NL. Cain’s biggest moment in 2012 came on June 13 when he threw a perfect game against the Astros. Cain led the Giants to their second World Series title in 3 seasons. Fresh off another ring, Cain is expected to be the lead man of the staff again coming into 2013.

Gio Gonzalez – Washington Nationals: The former Oakland Athletic wasn’t suppose to lead the Nationals in wins or ERA, but after Strasburg was shut down Gonzalez became the ace. Leading the Nl in wins with 21 and posting a 2.89 ERA, Gio was a serious Cy Young Award candidate. Despite PED rumors, Gonzalez will come out and look to mirror his performance last season. Gonzalez and his nasty curveball will be feared among NL hitters once again.

Kris Medlen – Atlanta Braves: Probably not the Braves pitcher you were expecting to see on this list, but after he was only limited to relief roles coming off Tommy John, Atlanta let the young man loose. Medlen went 10-1 with a staggering 1.57 ERA for the Braves and also started the Nl Wild Card playoff game against St. Louis. Entering the 2013 season, Medlen will have a full season to look forward to, something NL batters aren’t going to want to see.


Johnny Cueto – Cincinnati Reds: Cueto’s season ended in disappointing fashion, leaving Game 1 of the NLDS in the 1st inning. But that doesn’t take away what Cueto did in the 2012 season. 19-9 with a 2.78 ERA and helping the Reds win 97 games. Cueto felt disrespected after not making the All-Star Game last season, he should take that frustration out in 2013.

Cole Hamels – Philadelphia Phillies: The 28 year old silently had a solid season in a disappointing season for the Phillies.  Hamels won 17 games, a career high and posted his second lowest ERA in a season with a 3.05. The 2008 World Series MVP also got a huge payday, 6 year 144 mill contract. Hamels looks to bring the Phillies back into the playoffs.

Craig Kimbrel – Atlanta Braves: Surprisingly, many experts felt Kimbrel was the more deserving Cy Young. Kimbrel was 42/45 in save opportunities, leading the NL is that department. Along with posting a filthy 1.01 ERA. Appearing in only 62 innings, Kimbrel still managed to strike out 116 batters. The 24 year old’s ceiling seems to have no limit.



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