Yu Darvish Cy Young Finalist


Sep 17, 2013; St. Petersburg, FL, USA; Texas Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish (11) stands in the dugout against the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field. The Rangers won 7-1. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Should Yu Darvish win the American League Cy Young?  The answer is, he might.  Yu Darvish joins the Seattle Mariners right handed pitcher Hisashi Iwakuma and the Detroit Tigers Max Scherzer are the 2013 American League Cy Young finalist.

Yu Darvish is coming off another outstanding year and has established himself as the ace of the club.   Darvish, like John Lackey and several other pitchers though do not have the stats that truly reflect his season.

For example, for the 2013 season, Yu Darvish had a record of 13-9 with an ERA of 2.83.  Darvish recorded 277 strikeouts, allowed 80 walks and 26 home runs.  He averaged 11.9 strikeouts and 3.4 walks over 9 innings.

To put those numbers in prospective, below is how Darvish finished on the leaderboard.

  • 1st – Strikeouts per 9 IP 11.890
  • 1st – Hits per 9 IP 6.224
  • 1st – Strikeouts 277
  • 4rd – ERA 2.83  (Iwakuma 3rd – 2.66)
  • 4th – Walks & Hits per IP 1.073 (Scherzer 1st – 0.970 and 2nd Iwakuma – 1.006)
  • 5th – WAR 5.8 (2nd Iwakuma – 7.0 and 3rd Scherzer – 6.7)

Another stat that needs to be mentioned is the run support that Yu Darvish received this year.   For the year, Darvish averaged 4.30 runs per game.  Over 32 games he pitched in, 3 of those games the Texas Rangers game him 10 or more runs 3 times.   The key stat that killed Yu Darvish’s records this year was the four 1-0 losses.  Those four losses enabled him to join the ranks of 7 other pitchers with that stat going back to 1916.   Darvish is the only Rangers to lose 4 1-0 games in a single season.

It could be argued that Darvish should have a better record this year.  He suffered 6 losses when the Rangers didn’t manage to score more than 3 runs.  Also, he was given no decisions on 5 games when the Rangers scored 3 or less.  Eleven games overall where Darvish pitched well enough to win a game.  Yu Darvish, being optimistic, could have been a 20 game winner this year.  More moderate, would say 17 wins with about 4 or 6 losses.

Now with the Cy Young awards just days from being announced, the question is will Darvish win it?  He does deserve it.  Also, he pitched well enough and has the stats behind him to take home the award.  The 2-time all-star might be even closer if he was able to keep the home runs allowed down and had a better record.  He has tough competition with Max Scherzer and Hisashi Iwakuma.

Some comments on Twitter.

My guess is Darvish will finish second in voting and Max Scherzer will take home the award, but I do hope Yu Darvish wins, and I think he deserves it.  We will find out shortly.

The Baseball Writers Association of America will announce their award winners on Wednesday, November 13, 2013.