WASHINGTON — It’s a different National–this time Max Scherzer–but for the second prediction in a row, Bovada sportsbook has a Washington pitcher bringing home the hardware for best pitcher in the National League.
The last time Bovada released Cy Young odds, Stephen Strasburg was in the middle of a prolonged stretch of dominance. With Clayton Kershaw shelved with injury, Strasburg was the toast of the senior circuit, boasting a 15-1 record with a 2.63 ERA.
But that was the high-water mark for Strasburg this season. He would lose his next three starts with his ERA ballooning by nearly one run to 3.59 on the season. He was then shelved with an arm injury that has kept him on the disabled list ever since.
Even after making progress and throwing another bullpen at Citi Field, he is unlikely to return to the Nationals until sometime later next week. He is eligible to return as early as Monday, but will be a nonfactor in the Cy Young discussion.
Instead, it is Scherzer’s time to shine, as the Nats ace has gone in the opposite direction of Strasburg. In has last three starts, Scherzer has spun three winners (15-7) and lowered his ERA to 2.89. That still puts him neck-and-neck with last Chicago’s Jake Arrieta (16-5, 2.84 ERA)
That still puts him neck-and-neck with last Chicago’s Jake Arrieta (16-5, 2.84 ERA), but Arrieta is coming off a dismal July where the Cubs lost each of his five starts.
Right now, the smart money remains with Scherzer, but he will need to continue his hot streak down the stretch to the postseason. Here is the full list of Bovada odds, as of Sept. 1:
Max Scherzer +200
Jake Arrieta +300
Madison Bumgarner +400
Jon Lester +600
Kyle Hendricks +600
Clayton Kershaw +900
Noah Syndergaard +1400
Jose Fernandez +180
[h/t CSN Washington]