12th Man Report: Scherzer claims his first Cy Young
In somewhat of an expected fashion last night, Detroit Tigers pitcher Max Scherzer was named the American League Cy Young winner.
Of the 30 associated press voters who participate in the season awards for the MLB and voted for the Cy Young winner (each league’s best pitcher, if you’re unfamiliar), Scherzer took home 28 — a pretty impressive number. He was dominant for the entirety of this year’s season and finished with an even more impressive 21-3 record and 2.90 earned run average.
Another interesting stat worth noting is that the Tigers have now won two-of-the-past three Cy Young awards. This has been evidenced by the domination of Detroit’s front end of the rotation, which included Anibal Sanchez this year.
Now when Justin Verlander won the award two years ago, he’d been known as a clutch, ace in the league for a while — while no one expected JV to have the absurd MVP-type caliber season he had, he had previously been a Cy Young candidate. Scherzer, who despite being known amongst the league before this season, never had that “ace feel” about him before this year.
Which is why this season is so special for him. Immediately following the announcement Scherzer especially showed his exuberance on twitter.
First he tweeted, “Ahhhhh!!! What a feeling!! Can’t wait to get my hands on this trophy.” Then a little later he wrote, “Gotta say one more time, thanks to all my teammates for their hard work this year, without them this might not happen. #detroittigers.”
These two comments epitomize the type of player that Max is. He’s neither selfish nor big headed. But he has one more year on his contract with the Tigers, so if they want to keep their two-eyeball-colored pitcher, owner Mike Illitch will have to fork up the big bucks.
There’s no doubt that Detroiters, the Tigers’ front office, and his fellow players all respect Scherzer and enjoy his company. But since he’s represented by Scott Boras, an agent who lives every day by the saying “the sky’s the limit”(seriously, though, the guy would get one of his clients the sky if it was negotiable), it doesn’t seem the Tigers could afford Max in free agency. The only option will be for Detroit to negotiate a contract extension this coming season and keep their most recent Cy Young winner off the free market.
Regardless of Scherzer’s future with the organization, we know one thing: he has etched his name in history, and Detroit definitely wants to see that name in a Tigers uniform for a long time.