I am starting to wonder if Cliff Lee actually can win the Cy Young award. His numbers have been dominant (2.44 ERA, 0.92 WHIP, 126 K, 9 BB), except for 1: only 10 wins after last night's 8 strikeout, 8 inning, 1 run performance. He has been one of the most dominant pitchers so far in the American League this season, but has been the hard luck loser more than his fair share so far. Can he win it if he doesn't get to 16 wins like last year's winner, Zack Greinke?
Jered Weaver will definitely garner a lot of support as well after another fine start last night against the Tigers. He went 7 innings, struck out 9, and recorded his 11th win of the season. He is now sporting a 2.96 ERA with 171 strikeouts in 155 innings.
Where would you rank Carlos Gonzalez next season for outfielders? At this point, he has to be top 3 at worst, in my opinion. He went 3 for 4 with 2 runs scored, 2 runs batted in, his 24th homerun, and his 16th stolen base yesterday. He's now on pace for a .320/107 runs/36 HR/110 RBI/24 SB, and to me the only outfielders I might consider ahead of him for next year are Ryan Braun, Carl Crawford, and Matt Kemp. But I'm not sold I would necessarily rank any of them ahead of Gonzalez either.
It seemed rather unlikely at the start of the season, but we could be looking at another very close, 3 way vote with Adam Wainwright seeming the most likely to end up on top. He won his 16th game yesterday, throwing a 7 strikeout shutout against the Marlins. He's now sporting a 2.07 ERA on the season.
For those in keeper leagues, a name to watch, who was just promoted to AAA, is Astros' pitcher Jordan Lyles. Lyles posted a 7-9 record with a 3.12 ERA at AA Corpus Christi, with 115 strikeouts against 35 walks. Lyles also won't turn 20 years old until this October, and could see time in the big leagues in short order.
Bronson Arroyo went 7 shutout innings against the Cubs yesterday, striking out 7 en route to the victory. To me, he's one of those pitchers who you just have to play and ignore the game to game numbers, as he seems to find a way to end the season with solid numbers, but some of the performances in between will drive you insane.
Although he's not hitting for average (.258), Mark Teixeira continues to hit for power, with his 24th homerun of the season. He's also driven in 83 runs now, and scored 80 runs of his own as well. I think he's likely to be somewhere in the 2nd round at worst to start next year, as he's on pace to score 100 runs and drive in 100 rbi pretty easily, and should end up with somewhere around 35 homeruns as well.
Daniel Hudson won his second consecutive start, going 7 innings and allowing 1 earned run and striking out 4. I think that right now, the Diamondbacks got the better pitcher in their trade, even in spite of the lack of experience from Hudson.
Drew Storen recorded his first career save yesterday against the Dodgers, and it appears pretty clear now that Storen is the closer in Washington, as Clippard and Burnett both pitched before Storen in the game yesterday. It's probably too late in many leagues, but Storen should be grabbed if you're looking for saves.