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MLB Cy Young Odds: Justin Verlander, Shane McClanahan, Sandy Alcantara Sit Atop A Stacked Field

The Cy Young race in both leagues has received a major shake-up lately with the emergence of pitchers like Sandy Alcantara and Shane McClanahan. Can preseason favorites such as Justin Verlander and Corbin Burnes hold off these surging pitchers?
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MLB Cy Young Odds: Justin Verlander, Shane McClanahan, Sandy Alcantara Sit Atop A Stacked Field

The Cy Young race in both leagues has received a major shake-up lately with the emergence of pitchers like Sandy Alcantara, Shane McClanahan, and Alek Manoah. Can preseason favorites such as Justin Verlander and Corbin Burnes hold off these surging pitchers? Ryan Kirksey breaks down the Cy Young odds for both MLB leagues.

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American League Cy Young Odds Favorites

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Shohei Ohtani AL Cy Young Odds (+1700) (Bet $100 to win $1700)

It is highly likely that Ohtani will win the AL Pitcher of the Month award for June. Over the last 30 days, Ohtani has a 1.52 ERA with more than 11 strikeouts per nine innings. He has four wins for the month and struck out 24 batters in his last two starts. In doing this, he has parlayed that elite performance into the conversation for the Cy Young award. Think about that for a second, a major league player who just won the MVP (on the strength of his batting) is now in strong contention for a Cy Young Award. It's not a crazy thought anymore, so the +1700 you can find out there certainly has me interested.

Alek Manoah AL Cy Young Odds (+1200) (Bet $100 to win $1200)

One of the contenders for last year's American League Rookie of the Year award could just find himself on the cusp of a Cy Young in just his second year if things break right the rest of the season. Through the first three months, Manoah has been unhittable at times and has turned in a 2.09 ERA (third-best in the AL) and an extremely low 1.8 walks per nine innings. In the end, this may not be the year to bet on a Cy Young for Manoah, but at just 24 years old, there is certainly an award waiting for him in his future.

Shane McClanahan AL Cy Young Odds (+1200) (Bet $100 to win $1200)

To look at what McClanahan has done through the first half of the season and say he is not the best pitcher in the AL is looking more and more foolish. In fact, many sportsbooks are now listing him as the favorite to win the Cy Young award (at anywhere from +275 to +400). He leads the AL in ERA (1.77), is second in strikeouts per nine, is third in wins, and is fifth in walks per nine innings. Who cares if the Rays are falling out of contention in the AL East? It's certainly not hurting Sandy Alcantara in Miami. If you can find McClanahan anywhere close to this +1200 number, I recommend laying whatever you can on it.

Gerrit Cole AL Cy Young Odds (+850) (Bet $100 to win $850)

Cole may have been outdueled by Cristian Javier is one of the games of the year on Saturday, but it doesn't diminish that he is leading a starting staff that has clearly become the best in baseball. His 2.99 ERA and 11.4 strikeouts per nine innings look very similar to the four straight years he was top-five in Cy Young voting. The curiously low six wins are the only things causing this to not look like a clear frontrunner for the award. We are seeing the walks tick up slightly for Cole this year (2.37 per line), so it's something to watch as the Yankees keep rolling over their opponents.

Justin Verlander AL Cy Young Odds (+400) (Bet $100 to win $400)

Fresh off another masterful performance on Wednesday, Verlander continues to put a stranglehold on the Cy Young odds. Most books list him between +250 and +325, with bet365 as the lone source for +400. It's looking more and more likely that this is going to come down to a showdown between Verlander and McClanahan over the last three months. Right now, the value is slightly on McClanahan's side, but if Verlander keeps up this pace of 20 wins with an ERA right at 2.00, it's going to be hard to deny him a third Cy Young award.

Justin Verlander +400
Gerrit Cole+850
Alek Manoah+1200
Shane McClanahan+1200
Shohei Ohtani+1700

National League Cy Young Odds Favorites

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Max Fried NL Cy Young Odds (+1400) (Bet $100 to win $1400)

Max Fried might be fourth in Cy Young odds in the National League, but he might as well be in another universe considering the competition he is facing from the top three candidates. It shouldn't diminish the fact that Fried is leading the charge that has brought the Braves back into contention in the NL East. His 2.77 ERA and minuscule walk rare (1.53 BB/9) have led to a 7-2 record this season. His only issue is he is facing competition from pitchers who are just on another level this year and may need to bump his candidacy down the road a bit. At just 28 years old, he has plenty of time to win one.

Joe Musgrove NL Cy Young Odds (+550) (Bet $100 to win $550)

All the talk the last month has been about Corbin Burnes and Sandy Alcantara for the NL Cy Young, but as you can see, from an oddsmakers' point of view, Musgrove is right up there with them. His 2.12 ERA and low 0.74 HR/9 are both the best of his career, and he has a stellar 8-1 record to match. The San Diego Padres are giving the Dodgers all they can handle in the NL West, and the reliable pitching of Musgrove is a big reason why. He is getting as the season goes along as well. In June, hitters are slashing just .177/.240/.302 against him, all his best numbers of the season.

Corbin Burnes NL Cy Young Odds (+550) (Bet $100 to win $550)

You know it's a strong year of Cy Young competition when you can have a 2.41 ERA, 11.5 K/9, and a pace of 190 innings and still not be in the lead for the award. With all of the turmoil surrounding the Milwaukee Brewers' offense and with Brandon Woodruff just coming off the IL, Burnes has been a rock for his team and he is on a three-game win streak where he has averaged seven innings and nine strikeouts per game. While Alcantara is putting up quite the roadblock to Burnes winning back-to-back Cy Young awards, any little stumble from the Marlins' ace would give Burnes a door to walk through.

Sandy Alcantara NL Cy Young Odds (+300) (Bet $100 to win $300)

You know a pitcher is having some kind of special season when he can talk his way into staying in to finish the ninth inning with just a one-run lead and multiple players on base. That's just what Alcantara did on Wednesday night, and it adds to the lore that is quickly developing around his excellent season in 2022. He leads the NL in innings pitched and home run rate, and is second in ERA, wins, and groundball rate. He has not pitched less than seven innings in almost two months and has allowed more than two earned runs only twice all season. He isn't blowing people away, entering July with just a 7.57 K/9 rate, but he pounds them into the ground with a 56.2% groundball rate, tied for first in the NL. Considering some books have him at +180 all ready to win, if you can find +300, this is a good bet to make.

Sandy Alcantara+300
Corbin Burnes+550
Joe Musgrove+550
Max Fried+1400

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Proudest husband and dad you will ever find. When I'm not with my wife and two kids I split my time working in higher ed, grinding DFS and season-long, collecting silver age comics, studying behavioral economics, and drinking coffee. I once played Pat Connaughton in an actual NBA DFS lineup for money. Astros, Rockets, and Texans for life.


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