SP Max Scherzer – Washington Nationals
As previously mentioned, there are always a handful of pitchers who are annual Cy Young candidates. Jacob deGrom has been one for the past three years and Clayton Kershaw has been one for the past decade.
And joining them is none other than Washington Nationals starting pitcher Max Scherzer.
The 36-year-old is the oldest of deGrom’s competition, and the most established behind Kershaw. Scherzer is a seven-time All-Star pitcher who also happens to have three Cy Young awards to his name, including two of them being back-to-back in 2016 and 2017.
What is the most terrifying about Scherzer is the fact that he is being rather overlooked. From 2015-2019, he never had an earned run average above 2.96 and started at least 30 games all but one of those seasons.
Whereas in 2020, Scherzer was one of the many superstars who never truly found his footing in the 60-game sprint. He started 12 games, going 5-4 with a 3.74ERA. He also gave up 9.4 hits per nine innings, his highest mark since 2011.
Given his numbers in 2020 and his age, Scherzer may be exiting his prime, which would be music to Mets fan’s ears. Then again, this is Max Scherzer, and he is going to have something to prove going into a contract season.
The Washington Nationals won the World Series in 2019 and are going to look to the veteran Scherzer to lead not only himself but the team in a bounce-back campaign. Taking into consideration he was a top-five finisher, if not winner, of the Cy Young award from 2013-2019, do not be surprised if he is a finalist once again.