There are quite a few pitchers that have been mentioned as contenders for the Cy-Young Award in the American League. Probably the most popular candidate would be Detroit Tigers pitcher Max Scherzer. Scherzer certainly deserves consideration and might win but someone else deserves serious consideration as well. Hisashi Iwakuma of the Seattle Mariners should be right up there with Scherzer and the rest of the front runners.
First of all throw wins out the window. Wins really shouldn’t matter that much in an award that is given for a pitcher’s effectiveness. If you were to look at wins they would need to be looked at as what percentage of their team’s wins did the pitcher get credit. In that light since Iwakuma is just a few wins behind Scherzer and the Tigers have way more wins, we can assume they are at least close in that stat.
Now looking at the real pitcher stats we see Iwakuma with a stat line of 2.92 ERA, 1.02 WHIP, 164 Ks and 191 innings pitched. The ERA race is crowded but Iwakuma is only .02 points behind Scherzer in that area which is basically a tie. Scherzer has a 0.93 WHIP which is also very close.
Also Iwakuma is the next closest to Scherzer in that stat column of pitchers who have thrown over 100 innings. Scherzer has him in K’s but those are a little different as well. Innings pitched area sees Iwakuma way ahead of Scherzer and only a few innings behind James Shields for the league lead.
Look across the board and I promise you Iwakuma has as good of stats as Scherzer and better than most. He might not win for one reason or the other but if he doesn’t then he definitely should be in the top few vote getters. Anything else would be wrong.