Even so, it still seems we could be appreciating his greatness more — and the rest of his numbers back it up.
Perhaps if we crowed a little louder, the perception across MLB wouldn’t be so incorrect? Rival fans think he’s slipping. Casuals who only watch the postseason seem to think he’s gettable.
Unfortunately for the rest of the baseball world, the 33-year-old Kershaw has basically been…just as untouchable these past few years as he ever was during his prime, which is…insane to think about.
Riding the wave of his first World Series championship, Kershaw has picked up right where he left off entering his 14th season in the Dodgers rotation (once again, for the people in the back: he’s 33!).
Since a bizarre Opening Day loss, he’s posted an insane line in five starts: 4-1, 1.16 ERA, 0.73 WHIP, .171 BA, and 37 Ks in 33 IP. After helping the Dodgers halt their miniature losing jag with a brilliant start Wednesday, it’s time we paid proper homage to one of the most consistent forces in baseball.
For all those who believe Kershaw “hasn’t been the same” since his Cy Young, or is still “un-clutch,” this list is for you. Tell your friends.
These 3 modern Clayton Kershaw stats are still insane. Dodgers legend.
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3. Dominance Since His Last Cy Young
Clayton Kershaw’s run of three-out-of-four Cy Youngs ended following the 2014 season when he finished an embarrassing third in the running in 2015 (boo this man!). If you need a refresher, that’s Cys in 2011, 2013 and 2014 with a second-place finish mixed in for the 2012 campaign.
That’s as locked-in as a pitcher can get. Heck, that’s as locked-in as anyone can be at any job, really.
Since that streak ended, though, wisdom has dictated that Kershaw isn’t quite the same pitcher anymore.
Well…maybe, since it’s impossible to be young forever, and we may never see a pitcher quite that perfect ever again. But in nearly 1,000 innings pitched since that last award was doled out, he’s been fairly remarkable. Kershaw’s ERA since the start of 2015? 2.36. Thanks for playing.
The only reason we don’t think of Kershaw as the “same pitcher” is because his prime numbers were so ridiculously gaudy. We may never see the likes of that 2014 season again from anyone — 21-3, 1.77 ERA, six complete games, 239 strikeouts in 198.1 innings pitched, and a wild 197 ERA+.
But how about 18-4, 2.31? That’s what he did in a full season in 2017. This year, he sports a 2.09 coming off a 2.16.
The same level of “spectacular”? Maybe not. But his regressive numbers still make him the most consistently great pitcher in baseball since 2014.