PHOENIX — There are 2-year-olds walking around out there who haven’t been alive for Clayton Kershaw winning a Cy Young Award. However, the Dodgers ace is favored to put an end to this exasperating drought in 2017, per online oddsmaker Bovada.
Kershaw is the favorite to win the National League Cy Young Award this season, at +160 per Bovada, meaning a $100 bet would win $160 should Kershaw win the award.
Though he missed 10 weeks with a herniated disc in his back and was limited to just 149 innings in 2016, Kershaw was still the best pitcher in baseball when he was on the mound and finished fifth in National League Cy Young voting. It was a record sixth straight year for Kershaw finishing in the top five, but his fifth-place finish was his worst showing since 2010, when he didn’t receive any votes.
Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer, who took home the 2016 NL Cy Young Award, is second favorite per Bovada at +350. Next best are Madison Bumgarner of the Giants and Noah Syndergaard of the Mets, both at +1000.
Kenta Maeda is at +3300 (33/1 odds) to win the 2017 Cy Young Award, and Dodgers closer Kenley Jansen is at +6600.
With three Cy Young Awards (2011, 2013 and 2014), Kershaw is already in select company. But winning a fourth award would put him in an even more exclusive group, joining Roger Clemens (7 awards), Randy Johnson (5), Steve Carlton (4) and Greg Maddux (4).
Kershaw also is at +3300 to win NL MVP. He is the only National League pitcher in the last 48 seasons to win NL MVP, in 2014. Reigning MVP Kris Bryant is the 2017 favorite at +275, with 2015 winner Bryce Harper at +300.
Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager, who finished third in MVP voting last year, is at +1200 to win in 2017. First baseman Adrian Gonzalez is at +5000 to win NL MVP.
This is at the fifth time in the last six years, and fourth consecutive season that Kershaw is the preseason favorite to win the NL Cy Young Award, per Bovada:
- 2012: +450 (also 25/1 to win MVP)
- 2013: +600 (Strasburg the favorite at +550; Kershaw 18/1 MVP)
- 2014: +650 (20/1 MVP)
- 2015: +100 (7/1 MVP)
- 2016: +175
- 2017: +160 (33/1 MVP)