It’s not unheard of for a pitcher to win the MVP. It has been done several times before and a Jacob deGrom MVP season does feel possible. A repeat of what he did in 2018 or something close to it plus a Mets trip to the postseason and little contention from position players should seal the deal for deGrom.
We can usually count on deGrom to be right there in the running for a Cy Young each year. An MVP, as unlikely as it is, may be next on his personal mountain to climb.
Clayton Kershaw was the last pitcher to win an MVP. His 2014 numbers included a 21-3 record with a 1.77 ERA. The big difference between that season and what deGrom managed in 2018 is quite obvious: wins.
It was a similar story in 2011 when Justin Verlander won his MVP from the mound. His season included a 24-5 record and 2.40 ERA.
Using these two pitchers as an example, it seems deGrom can do it if his offense ever starts to give him even average run support.
Whenever a pitcher win the MVP, there has to be no question they were the most important player in the league to their team. It’s not always easy when you play every fifth day. Position players have such a distinct advantage. Plus, many voters may feel the Cy Young is the equivalent honor.
Strictly looking at 2020 and an expected shorter than usual year, I think a pitcher has an even better chance to capture the MVP Award. Often, a pitcher’s numbers dip over time. With fewer starts, the odds stack in their favor.