New York Mets ace Jacob deGrom won the National League Cy Young Award for a second consecutive year, besting Hyun-Jin Ryu of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Washington Nationals right-hander Max Scherzer.
deGrom received 29 of 30 first-place votes, and one second-place vote. Ryu garnered the lone remaining first-place vote, 10 for second place and eight for third, good for 88 points. Scherzer received eight second- and third-place votes and finished with 72 overall points.
deGrom is the first NL pitcher to win back-to-back Cy Young Awards since Scherzer accomplished the feat from 2016-17. At the end of October, deGrom was voted by his peers as the NL Outstanding Pitcher, ahead of Ryu and Atlanta Braves right-hander Mike Soroka.
In 32 starts this season, deGrom posted an 11-8 record with a 2.43 ERA, 2.67 FIP and 0.97 WHIP across 204 innings pitched. He accumulated an NL-leading 255 strikeouts, an impressive 7.3 WAR (Baseball-Reference) and was selected to his second straight All-Star team.
Ryu jumped out to an excellent start in 2019, pitching to a 1.45 ERA over his first 22 starts of the season. He rode that momentum to his first career All-Star Game selection, becoming the first Korean born pitcher to start in a Midsummer Classic.
While a handful of uncharacteristically poor starts in August inflated Ryu’s overall numbers in the second half, he still finished his 2019 campaign with a 14-5 record, MLB-leading 2.32 ERA, 3.10 FIP and 1.01 WHIP in 182.2 innings. He struck out 163 batters and issued only 24 walks.
Had Ryu gotten the nod over deGrom, he would have become the ninth Dodgers pitcher in franchise history to win the Cy Young Award and first to do so since Clayton Kershaw in 2014. Along with falling short, Ryu additionally was not selected for the Warren Spahn Award, which is presented annually to the best left-hander. Washington Nationals starter Patrick Corbin received the honor.
In the wake of his most productive season yet, Ryu is now set to enter free agency for the first time in his career. His agent Scott Boras is looking forward to the process and believes the left-hander will be of value for teams in need of a pitcher with little wear-and-tear on his arm.
The Texas Rangers are said to have heavily scouted Ryu during the 2019 season and could be one of his many interested suitors this winter.
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