Los Angeles Dodgers 2015 Season Awards
By Alex Campos
October 15, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Zack Greinke (21) returns to the dugout after being relieved in the seventh inning against New York Mets in game five of NLDS at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports
MVP: Zack Greinke
Yeah, I’m going with the Cy Young to one player, MVP to the other cop-out.
Greinke and Kershaw each have a strong case for the Cy Young award, with the main difference being in consistency. While Greinke did it for the whole season, Kershaw “struggled” early on.
While a lot of it was bad luck, Kershaw gave up 28 earned runs in his first nine starts. He gave up 27 earned runs in his next 24, but he did not do what the Dodgers needed him to do in the first portion of the season. Greinke, on the other hand, was consistently stellar all season. He had two outlying starts where he gave up five runs, and every other time Greinke took the hill he registered a quality start. I don’t love the “quality start” stat because a full season of allowing three runs in six innings is a 4.50 ERA (not quality at all), but Greinke’s consistency kept the Dodgers in first during Kershaw’s early season struggles.
Hopefully, the Dodgers saw Greinke’s value this season. He’s expected to opt out of the final three years of his contract and seek a longer deal. It’s always risky doling out a long term contact to a 32-year old pitcher with over 2,000 innings in his arm, but Greinke has never relied on velocity. He’s one of the smarter pitchers in the game and those pitchers tend to age better. My gut tells me Greinke will be back next year, but I also don’t see this front office overpaying an aging pitcher. Hopefully it’ll be a beneficial contract for both sides.