Stop wasting time and just hand Jacob deGrom the NL Cy Young already.
In case you needed any more reason to give the Mets ace the prestigious pitching award, we provide you his latest accolades: 23 consecutive quality starts, a single-season record, along with 28 straight starts holding opponents to three runs or less, also a feat never accomplished in the history of the game.
But wait, there’s more.
The Mets offense actually came through for their ace to the tune of four runs, more than enough on this Friday night to take down the Nationals, 4-2 in the nation’s capital.
deGrom went seven innings strong, fanning eight while giving up a run on three hits.
He’s up to nine wins on the season, four away from the benchmark Felix Hernandez set in 2010 as the lowest amount of wins to ever win the Cy Young.
But deGrom’s underlying numbers blow those of King Felix out of the water.
deGrom has a sparkling 1.77 ERA with a WHIP of 0.94, while King Felix pitched to a 2.27 ERA and 1.06 WHIP when he claimed the award.
“He’s just getting better and better. He’s a special ballplayer. He goes out there every night and it’s tough that he only has nine wins or eight wins or whatever he has,” said Nationals slugger Bryce Harper, who went 0 for 3 against deGrom, including a pair of strikeouts and a chopper back to the pitcher. “He’s one of the best in baseball — from both leagues. You know what you’re going to get out of him every single night and tonight he was pretty tough.”
DeGrom is locked in a tight race for Cy Young honors — and perhaps league MVP consideration, too — with Nationals ace Max Scherzer, who is 17-7 with a 2.57 ERA and 290 strikeouts. Scherzer has won the past two Cy Young Awards in the NL, plus one in the AL when he played for the Detroit Tigers.
“I want us to be in every ballgame that I pitch, so I guess that kind of is an accomplishment of a goal that I have,” deGrom said. “So I want to continue to do that moving forward.”
In the Mets’ 5-4 victory in 12 innings Thursday, Scherzer gave up three runs in seven innings and struck out 13.
Now back to the game at hand, which was pretty much wrapped up by third inning thanks to deGrom’s brilliance.
Jay Bruce had two run-scoring hits, and Devin Mesoraco and Dominic Smith also delivered RBIs, all off Joe Ross (0-1).
Robert Gsellman worked around Anthony Rendon’s RBI single in the ninth for his 12th save.
Washington began the day in danger of being officially eliminated from contention in the NL East, which it won the past two seasons under then-manager Dusty Baker. A loss by the Nationals plus a victory by the Braves would end any chance Washington has of catching Atlanta.
DeGrom looked good from the outset, striking out leadoff hitter Victor Robles with a 98 mph fastball, then getting Bryce Harper to swing through a 99 mph offering to end the first inning. Harper missed a 93 mph slider to strike out again in the fourth, then grounded out on a chopper fielded by deGrom in the sixth.
Washington’s only run off deGrom came on Ryan Zimmerman’s sacrifice fly on a ball hit to the warning track in deep center field in the second.