If any are still doubtful about Cleveland Indians ace Corey Kluber being the man who should win this year's AL Cy Young Award, they need to take a look at his line from last night.
The Klubot shook off a rough first inning against the Chicago White Sox and tossed seven innings of two-run ball while walking just one and striking out 13. After giving up solo home runs to Jose Abreu and Yolmer Sanchez in the first frame, he gave up just one more hit for the rest of his start as the Indians cruised to an 11-2 victory.
Make no mistakes, folks. No disrespect to Chris Sale, but Kluber has been looking like the better man as of late and is well on his way to bringing home his second Cy Young.
Another dream season
Kluber's win last night upped his record to 15-4 on the year and lowered his ERA to an AL-best 2.56. His 15 wins put him in a three-way tie with Sale and teammate Trevor Bauer for most in the league as well. Kluber also has a 6.1 WAR on the year and is top in the AL with a 0.88 WHIP.
And here's the kicker. As I have mentioned several times before, Kluber is having this season despite missing a month of action with a back injury. He has 235 strikeouts in 175.2 innings and the only real mark against him is that he has given up 20 home runs. Opposing hitters are batting just .192 against him.
Sale may have the higher WAR, more strikeouts and is having the better overall year, but he has not been able to win when it counts, especially against the New York Yankees and Cleveland Indians. The award should be Kluber's, hands down.
Kluber's hot streak
Kluber has also been red-hot as of late. He is 7-1 over his last eight starts with an astounding 1.91 ERA and has 74 strikeouts in his 61 innings over that stretch.
The same cannot be said for Sale, who is 2-3 with a 4.59 ERA since August 1. Not only that, Kluber is 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA against the Yankees this year, whereas Sale is 0-3, albeit with a 2.65 ERA. Sale is also 0-1 with a 14.63 ERA against Cleveland and unless he absolutely dominates in his final starts, he may have lost out on the AL Cy Young to Kluber.
For this writer's money, that would not be a bad thing. Kluber has been the better man when it counts and is the hotter arm now and should be rewarded accordingly.