With all due respect to CC Sabathia, Justin Verlander, Felix Hernandez, Roy Halladay, and Mariano Rivera — they are not winning the American League Cy Young award in 2009. That honor will go to Kansas City Royals ace Zack Greinke.
My preseason pick to win the AL Cy Young award (I am going to take that to the grave with me.) all but wrapped up the award with a solid six inning, zero-run performance against the Boston Red Sox last night.
Did Greinke have his best stuff last night? Probably not. He did walk three in six innings of work. But Greinke proved last night why he is the best pitcher in baseball in 2009 — even when he doesn’t have his best stuff, he can still dominate one of the best lineups in baseball.
Greinke only allowed two hits and kept the Red Sox hitters off-balance all night. He made Kevin Youkilis look awful in three AB’s. He struck Youkilis out twice and in the third AB, all Youkilis could do is flick his wrists and hit a lazy fly ball to center.
Youkilis looked more confused that I did watching an episode of the X Files.
What I love about Greinke is that be makes everything look so effortless on the mound. Greinke is in such a groove that he can throw any pitch, any time in the count and it appears like it is no big deal to the viewer.
Greinke improved to 15-8 with his win last night. Greinke is now first in the AL in ERA (2.08), first in shutouts (three), first in WHIP (1.059), first in hits/9 innings (7.57), second in complete games (six), and second in strikeouts (229).
Lady’s and gentleman, your 2009 AL Cy Young award winner.