Home News Shane McClanahan, Zac Gallen lead 2nd Cy Young poll of 2023

Shane McClanahan, Zac Gallen lead 2nd Cy Young poll of 2023

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We asked MLB.com experts to vote on the top five Cy Young Award candidates in each league, based on what’s happened so far and what they expect will happen the rest of the season.

Pitchers received points on a 5-4-3-2-1 scale — five points for a first-place vote, four points for a second-place vote and so on, with 49 voters participating.

Here are the 2023 Cy Young Award frontrunners right now.

There’s a clear favorite in the AL in the eyes of the MLB.com voters — and it’s not the same pitcher from the first Cy Young poll. McClanahan, who was No. 2 in that poll, has leapfrogged Gerrit Cole into the No. 1 spot. The Rays ace leads the AL in ERA (2.02), is first in the Majors in wins (9-1 record) and is third in the AL in strikeouts (87).

Eovaldi has been a Jacob deGrom-like ace in deGrom’s absence, with a 2.24 ERA over an MLB-high 80 1/3 innings pitched. He’s on a lights-out run, with a 0.68 ERA over his last seven starts, including five scoreless outings. That vaults Eovaldi all the way up to No. 2 in the Cy Young poll after he was unranked in the first edition.

The early favorite in the first Cy Young poll, Cole slips a little in the voting after a pair of rocky starts to end May. But he just started June by beating the Dodgers with six innings of one-run baseball, moving to 7-0 with a 2.82 ERA and 84 K’s. He could be back in the top spot soon.

After starting the season 2-4 despite a 2.60 ERA, Valdez is 4-0 with a 1.59 ERA in his last five starts. The Astros ace is right in the thick of the AL ERA race, with a 2.16 mark, and he’s in the top five in strikeouts in the AL with 84, tied with Cole.

Gray had an ERA under 2.00 for the first two months of the season, and even though it’s crept up to 2.15 after his first start of June, the veteran right-hander is still among the league leaders. Gray has made 12 starts this year and has yet to allow more than three runs in a game.

Others receiving votes: Kevin Gausman (3 first-place votes), Luis Castillo, Shohei Ohtani, Eduardo Rodriguez, Joe Ryan, Félix Bautista, Tyler Wells, Cristian Javier, Zach Eflin, Yennier Cano

Gallen was No. 1 in the NL in the first Cy Young poll and retains the top spot. He’s leading the way for the surprising D-backs, who are tied with the Dodgers atop the NL West, with a 7-2 record (tied for first in the NL in wins), 2.75 ERA (fifth) and 88 strikeouts (tied for third).

Strider stays locked into the No. 2 spot as he continues another dominant season. The Major League leader in strikeouts with 113 — which, in 69 2/3 innings, gives him a ridiculous 14.6 K/9 — could have a real shot at a 300-strikeout season. Strider’s already over halfway to the 202 K’s he racked up as a rookie.

Stroman ranks second in the NL with a 2.39 ERA over 79 innings pitched (tied for second in the NL). He’s 4-0 with a 0.93 ERA over his last four starts, beating the Phillies, Mets, Rays and Padres over that run as he jumps into the top five in the Cy Young poll.

Keller continues to build on his strong finish to 2022 in the first half of 2023, with a 7-1 record, 3.25 ERA and 93 strikeouts through his first 12 starts. The right-hander is only behind Strider in K’s in the NL, and he’s on a run of seven straight starts with eight or more strikeouts.

The Giants sinkerballer isn’t getting the results in the win-loss column, as his record sits at 4-6 through 12 starts, but that doesn’t reflect how well he’s pitched. Webb has a 2.85 ERA and 82 K’s, and he’s on a run of eight straight quality starts, the longest active streak in MLB.

Others receiving votes: Bryce Elder (3 first-place votes), Clayton Kershaw (1 first-place vote), Merrill Kelly, Justin Steele, Alex Cobb, Zack Wheeler, Devin Williams, Corbin Burnes, Max Scherzer, Alexis Díaz, Josiah Gray

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