Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw won his second National League Cy Young Award on Wednesday, joining Sandy Koufax as the only pitchers in franchise history to receive the honor more than once.
Kershaw got 29 of the 30 first-place votes. He won in 2011 and finished second last year.
He led the major leagues in earned-run average for the third consecutive season, joining Greg Maddux (1993-95) and Lefty Grove (1929-31) as the only pitchers to accomplish the feat.
A Dodgers pitcher has won the Cy Young Award a record 11 times, including Koufax in 1963, 1965, and 1966. The Philadelphia Phillies and Milwaukee/Atlanta Braves each have had pitchers win seven times.
Kershaw was 16-9 with a 1.83 ERA, the lowest mark by a major league starter since Pedro Martinez had a 1.74 ERA with the 2000 Boston Red Sox. Maddux was the last NL starter to do better, with a 1.63 ERA with the 1995 Atlanta Braves.
Kershaw, 25, led the NL in strikeouts and WHIP (walks and hits per inning pitched). He ranked among the top three in victories, innings pitched, complete games, shutouts, pickoffs and opponent batting average.
“I’m a little biased,” catcher A.J. Ellis said in September, “but I think I have the best seat, catching the best pitcher in baseball.”
Adam Wainwright of the St. Louis Cardinals placed second, receiving the one first-place vote not awarded to Kershaw. Jose Fernandez of the Miami Marlins, who beat the Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig for NL rookie of the year, finished third in the Cy Young vote.
Kershaw also is expected to garner some votes in the NL most-valuable-player race. The results will be announced Thursday, although the top three finishers already have been disclosed and he is not among them. The MVP finalists, in alphabetical order: Paul Goldschmidt of the Arizona Diamondbacks, Andrew McCutchen of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Yadier Molina of the Cardinals.
For the record: An earlier version of this report said that Clayton Kershaw joined Greg Maddux (1993-95) and Sandy Koufax (1962-66) as the only pitchers to lead the majors in earned-run average for three consecutive seasons. Koufax led the National League in those seasons.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun