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Clayton Kershaw named IBWAA NL Pitcher of the Year

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Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

LOS ANGELES -- The Internet Baseball Writers Association of America on Wednesday announced winners of the top pitchers in each league, with Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw named National League pitcher of the year.

Kershaw received all 158 first-place votes, winning his third IBWAA award in four seasons. I also had Kershaw in first place. Here is my ballot.

1) Kershaw

This was an easy choice, with Kershaw completely dominating despite missing five weeks. Kershaw made 27 starts and averaged 7.35 innings per start, tops in the majors, and also led the majors in ERA (1.77), wins (21), WHIP (0.857), strikeout rate (31.9 percent), strikeouts per nine innings (10.85) and complete games.

2) Johnny Cueto, Reds

Cueto had a fantastic year in his own right, tied for the league lead in strikeouts (242), tops in the NL in innings (243⅔ innings, 45 more than Kershaw), tied for second in wins (20), and second in ERA (2.25) and WHIP (0.960).

3) Adam Wainwright, Cardinals

Wainwright was 20-9 with a 2.38 ERA in 227 innings for St. Louis, in other words a pretty typical Wainwright season. He is assured of a top-three finish in the BBWAA Cy Young Award for a fourth time in the last six years, and with good reason.

4) Madison Bumgarner, Giants

Keep in mind this vote occurred before the playoffs began, back when Bumgarner was simply a young ace in his own right and not history's greatest superman. Bumgarner the regular season version was 18-10 with a 2.98 ERA in 33 starts, with 219 strikeouts against just 43 walks.

5) Cole Hamels, Phillies

Hamels didn't have many wins to show for it at just 9-9 for Philadelphia, but he was fantastic in his 30 starts. Hamels had a 2.46 ERA with 198 strikeouts in 204⅔ innings. This was a close vote for me after an easy top four, with Hamels narrowly edging Zack Greinke, Stephen Strasburg and Jordan Zimmermann.