Originally Posted by TDog
I don't know what I've last heard ESPN referred to as credible, but I don't believe it was on WSI. Apparently it's only credible if you agree with it.
Obviously if you have your mind made up that isolated out-of-context stats are the only thing that determine how well a pitcher has pitched, that losing games your team gives you a chance to win and the occasional forgettable outing where you never gave your team a chance to win shouldn't count against you, no argument will change your mind. Forget the grand slams allowed after he put men on base with walks or by hitting them. Argue that he plays for a lousy team that loses a lot but ignore the blame he shares in some of those losses.
If you are so committed to the statistics that overlook Sale's inconsistency in favor of the facts that point out he has been inconsistent in context of being a staff ace, then there is no point in a rational discussion.
If baseball consensus held that Chris Sale deserved the Cy Young Award this year, there would be ESPN Insider columns pointing out that in the same number of innings Max Scherzer has given up fewer runs, fewer hits, fewer home runs, fewer grand slams, fewer grand slams while holding a 3-0 lead and has struck out more hitters. At the same time, Scherzer has struck out more hitters and has done more to help his team win. The only thing I can guess is that there are some people who hate the win-loss stat so much that they actually penalize pitchers for winning games.
Scherzer has had a better season than Sale. I can't imagine Scherzer having a better season in his career than he is right now. The thing is, I can imagine Sale having a better season than he is having. I would hope he has multiple better seasons. I'm a big Chris Sale fan. I drove 100 miles just to see him pitch in person this year. I expected him to have a much better season after watching him pitch on opening day.
But I'm not going to make an argument that Sale deserves the Cy Young this year because depending on the statistics you look at, he has almost been as good as Scherzer.
Honest question. If you've been disappointed in Sale's season--his second year as a starter where he's guaranteed to at least match his 6th-place in Cy Young voting from his first year--what do you honestly expect from him? He's already been an elite pitcher in his first two seasons as a starter. Will you not be satisfied unless he's Clayton Kershaw?
We haven't seen a Sox pitcher put up consecutive seasons of this quality since McDowell twenty years ago--if then.