It came as absolutely no surprise to anyone, and it wasn’t even close!
Only one of the 30 sportswriters who get a vote failed to name Clayton Kershaw on the top of his ballot as the Dodger ace won his second Cy Young Award in the past three seasons on Wednesday.
Kershaw beat out – by a huge margin – the St. Louis Cardinals’ Adam Wainwright and the Miami Marlins’ Jose Fernandez, who incidentally beat the Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig for the National League’s Rookie of the Year honors.
Considering the fact that Kershaw had an incredible 1.83 earned run average this season, the lowest ERA in baseball since 2000 and leading the majors for the third straight year in that category, how could anyone dispute this honor?
Adding to that significance, only Greg Maddux (1993-1995) and legendary Hall of Famer Lefty Grove (1929-1931) have led MLB in earned run average three consecutive years before Kershaw.
And being only 25 years old, he joins only four other pitchers, including Roger Clemens, in winning two Cy Young Awards before hitting that chronological milestone.
For 2013, Kershaw finished 16-9; he would have easily won 20 games and lost less than nine if he had better run support. His 248 strikeouts led the N.L. and his 0.92 WHIP – walks plus hits per innings pitched – led all of baseball.
One very important thing remains for the Dodgers to do in regards to their pitching star:
SIGN KERSHAW TO A LONG TERM DEAL!
As Kershaw is eligible for free agency after the 2014 season, the Dodgers need to get a deal done, and get it done fast!
I won’t say that money is no object, but it’s presumed that the young Texan will command roughly $200 to $300 million – which is money that he more than deserves.
If the Dodgers want to keep Kershaw, they need to be more than willing to pay him what he wants.
Otherwise he may be pitching in a Texas Rangers uniform in 2015.
A memo to the Dodger organization:
Get Kershaw’s signature on the dotted line and make him a longtime Dodger if not a lifetime one.
If you don’t and let him walk, you’ll have millions of fans – and not just the over three and a half million who came to Dodger Stadium last season – so angry at you they won’t be able to see straight.
Do the right thing, Dodgers!
Now for your enjoyment, Dodger fans: A video of Kershaw’s exploits and highlights from this past season: