Clayton Kershaw pitched the Dodgers past the Giants on Sunday afternoon, helping extend his club’s NL West lead to three games. The lefty went eight innings, allowing two runs on seven hits and a walk while striking out nine. Kershaw now owns a 19-3 record with a 1.70 ERA, 0.83 WHIP, and a 219/28 K/BB ratio.
Kershaw is a lock for the National League Cy Young award, but teammate and first baseman Adrian Gonzalez thinks Kershaw is the obvious choice for NL MVP as well:
Gonzalez on Kershaw as MVP: “If somebody even tries to mention someone else, they’re an idiot.” #Dodgers
— Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) September 14, 2014
Kershaw is the major league leader in Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball Reference, which hasn’t yet been updated for today’s action. Kershaw’s 7.7 WAR narrowly edges Mike Trout’s 7.6 and is well ahead of Jason Heyward’s 6.5, who has the second-highest WAR in the National League. Per FanGraphs (which also won’t update until the morning), Kershaw’s 6.3 WAR edges out Jonathan Lucroy’s 6.0.
What we’re witnessing from Kershaw is the best starting pitching season since Roger Clemens in 2005 and Pedro Martinez circa 1997-2003.