By Adam Thompson | | 4 mins
AL Cy Young Odds, 2020 Favorites & Bets You Should Back
Gerrit Cole and Shane Bieber finished second and fourth, respectively, in the 2019 American League Cy Young Award voting.
They’re neck-and-neck for the 2020 award nearly midway through the MLB season.
They’re not alone on the board, however, and all it takes is one poor outing in this 60-game sprint of a season to even the playing field down the stretch.
The AL Cy Young MLB futures market provides some interesting options.
|Shane Bieber, Cleveland Indians||+150|
|Gerrit Cole, New York Yankees||+250|
|Lance Lynn, Texas Rangers||+450|
|Dylan Bundy, Los Angeles Angels||+1600|
|Blake Snell, Tampa Bay Rays||+1800|
|Frankie Montas, Oakland A’s||+2000|
|Zack Greinke, Houston Astros||+2000|
|Lucas Giolito, Chicago White Sox||+2200|
|Carlos Carrasco, Cleveland Indians||+3300|
|Tyler Glasnow, Tampa Bay Rays||+3300|
MLB odds are current as of publication.
Known Names Lead List
There are several legitimate contenders on the board, but the two biggest names are the two on the top.
Cole finished second to then-Astros-teammate Justin Verlander for the award last year. After inking a megadeal to join the rival Yankees, the veteran Cole was quickly chosen as the favorite to win this year’s AL Cy Young. Bieber went 15-8 with a 3.28 ERA with 259 strikeouts, taking fourth in AL voting.
Cole and Cleveland ace Bieber both have gotten off to stellar starts to 2020. Cole is 4-0 with a 2.75 ERA and 44 strikeouts in 36 innings. Bieber is even better, 4-0 with a league-low 1.30 ERA and a league-leading 54 strikeouts through 34.2 innings.
Sleepers To Be Found
It’s a two-horse race, but in a short season, it doesn’t take more than 1-2 rough outings to blow statistics out of contention. Other pitchers in the race can still catch up.
Lance Lynn of the Rangers is right there in terms of stats. Lynn, who hasn’t made the All-Star Game since 2012, is 3-0 with a 1.37 ERA. Dylan Bundy, an Orioles castoff, landed with the Angels and is 3-2 with a 2.48 ERA. Each, however, lack a track record and likely offensive backing to stay strong to the end.
Strikeouts Not Required
Bieber (65), Giolito (45), Cole (44), Lynn (42) and Bundy (38) rank 1-5 in strikeouts in the American League. But that’s not a precursor to awards glory – none of the last AL Cy Young Award winners led their own league in strikeouts.
But wins? That’s another story. Wins may be considered more of a team-based, individual stat, but the last 10 AL Cy Young Award winners have all led the league in victories.
That lends itself to successful pitchers on winning teams – and is a knock on the likes of Lynn and Bundy, who may not get the run support to compete with Bieber and Cole. Fellow Indians hurler Carlos Carrasco, Rays starters Blake Snell and Tyler Glasnow and the Twins’ Jose Berrios (+5000) also stay in contention based on a potential win total.
AL Cy Young Picks
Gerrit Cole +250
Last year Cole went 20-5 with a 2.50 ERA and his 1.5 strikeouts per inning was the most by a starter in MLB history. He led the league in WAR among AL pitchers, too, and went 19-0 over his last 25 starts. It was one of the great seasons in MLB history. And he took second for the AL Cy Young.
Now he’s on a Yankees team that will give him a boatload of run support. With fewer starts per starter than usual in 2020, Cole has the weaponry to mow down batters, keep his ERA low and collect wins. And after last year’s snub, he might get the sympathy vote, too. Back Cole for the highest odds at DraftKings.
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Hyun-Jin Ryu +5000
Ryu found big free-agent money with the Blue Jays after six seasons in Los Angeles. His first two starts didn’t go so well, as he was roughed up for eight runs over nine innings.
But since then, Ryu has found his form. He has surrendered just two runs over his last 17 innings, with 18 strikeouts, just five walks and one home run allowed.
He’s 2-1 with a mediocre 3.46 ERA despite an average allowed of only .221. If there’s a dark horse in the field, it might be Ryu. This is guy who went 14-5 with a 2.32 ERA last year, and posted a 1.97 ERA the year before. He has special stuff when he’s on.
If Cole and Bieber fade, Ryu might be the guy who picks up the slack – as long as the Blue Jays can score him some runs. Secure Ryu as a massive underdog to hit at DraftKings.