Max Scherzer has the wins and the strikeouts. Eighteen of the former and 300 of the latter.
Jacob deGrom, who has eight fewer wins than Scherzer, has the ERA. It’s an amazing 1.70 after the Mets righthander threw eight shutout innings against the Braves in a 3-0 victory at Citi Field on Wednesday night.
Scherzer has three Cy Young awards. In November, deGrom will win his first.
DeGrom, in his final start of the year, sewed up the NL Cy Young Award with a scintillating performance. Trust me on that.
This election won’t be close if the 30 voting members of the Baseball Writers Association of America have been paying attention. And since I know many of them personally, I can tell you they have been.
(But I won’t tell you who they are. It’s up to the voters to reveal themselves publicly — and who they voted for — when the time is right.)
DeGrom is 10-9. Scherzer is 18-7 with a 2.53 ERA. DeGrom’s had the better season.
You want to talk about the importance of wins and losses? Sonny Gray is 11-9.
It won’t matter a bit. DeGrom will take home the hardware when the results are announced in November.
It’s no disrespect to Scherzer, who has had a remarkable season for the Nationals, or Aaron Nola of the Phillies, who is 16-6, 2.45.
Scherzer got a standing ovation at Nationals Park and a postgame bottle of Champagne after notching his 300th strikeout on Tuesday.
DeGrom got an ovation every time he came to bat on Wednesday. He got an “MVP” chant during his final inning. He got a standing ovation when he walked off the mound after striking out Ozzie Albies on a 91-mile per hour, 3-and-2 slider for his 10th strikeout of the night and 1,000th of his career.
DeGrom admitted he was going for the 10 Ks because he wanted to hit 1,000. The strikeout ball was already in his locker after the game, encased in plastic with “1,000” taped on it.
DeGrom, who won the 2014 NL Rookie of the Year award, should plan to make some more room in his trophy case.
“I guess,” deGrom said. “You’re going to have to ask who votes. I wish I had more wins, but it is what it is. Feel like I put myself in a pretty good position.”
For most of the season, deGrom was betrayed by the Mets’ offense, defense and bullpen. They were 14-18 in his starts. It looked as if Wednesday would be more of the same as the Mets, with a lefty-laden lineup, were one-hit by lefthander Sean Newcomb over the first five innings of a scoreless game.
But Atlanta manager Brian Snitker, with an NL East title already clinched and a playoff series to get ready for, removed Newcomb after 88 pitches. In came righthander Luke Jackson, who gave up a one-out double to Michael Conforto and a two-out, RBI single to Dominic Smith.
Rookie second baseman Jeff McNeil also made three stellar defensive plays in back of deGrom. Conforto and Smith homered in the eighth to make it 3-0.
The only question in the fans’ minds was would manager Mickey Callaway send deGrom out for the ninth with 110 pitches. “We Want Jake” chants filled the damp night air.
Callaway, who is no Terry Collins when it comes to being emotional, said: “There was no chance he was going back out.”
Seth Lugo was booed as he jogged in the from the bullpen, but he got the final three outs and deGrom got his win.
Soon he’s going to get his Cy.
Said deGrom: “It was definitely a fun year for me.”
Jacob deGrom ended his night with the 1,000th strikeout of his career. It also moved him into fourth place on the Mets’ single-season strikeout list.
289 Tom Seaver 1971
283 Seaver 1970
276 Dwight Gooden 1984
269 Jacob deGrom 2018