Although Felix Hernandez has a lower ERA than either David Price or CC Sabathia, the award should go to Price or Sabathia because they "are delivering when it counts, where it counts. Hernandez isn’t."
There are some statements made here that are so funny that I feel the need to address them specifically. (Note: these statements are addressed out of order because I frantically grabbed at them like a toddler chasing fireflies.)
And where was Cy Young candidate Felix Hernandez during all of this? In Seattle, with his last-place team, about as far away from meaningful baseball as a pitcher can get. (More on him later.)
Before every game, the starting pitcher gets on his haunches, buries his face in his hands, and emits a tortured scream. Then, in a display that is frankly terrifying, the room is bathed in blinding light. Bolts of lightning and s*** fly everywhere. By the end of this process, nine avatars of the starting pitcher are produced out of thin air, and these nine entities are penciled into the batting order. Now, if you have a pitcher who doesn't have what it takes to win, these guys will end up being a bunch of Casey Kotchmen.
The Mariners are regarded as a season-long shipwreck, but Hernandez did have a (brief) chance to help them remain respectable. Seattle was only a half-game back in the AL West at the end of April. But Hernandez lost on May 1 and finished the month 0-3 with a 4.79 ERA. He didn’t start dealing until the Mariners’ season was all but lost.
CC Sabathia's ERA in May was 5.15. Also, while Hernandez was pitching 2.23 in April, Sabathia was pitching 3.12.
There’s an award for a pitcher such as Hernandez. It’s called the ERA title.
This would be a really good point if there were such thing as an ERA award.
And it’s not as if Hernandez’s ERA is that much better than Price’s (2.75) or Sabathia’s (3.03),
Fair enough; the difference between 2.75 and Hernandez's 2.39 is 0.36. When I think of a big difference, I think of a number like 50 or something.
especially considering that Hernandez benefits from the moist Northwest air.
Hernandez's park-adjusted ERA+ is 168. Price's is 152. Sabathia's is 131. (This is the weird kind of ERA in which the highest number is the best.)
Must be a great feeling — shutting down the defending World Series champs, high-fiving teammates who can smell the champagne, delivering for a raucous home crowd in September, knowing that the biggest ring is attainable.
Hernandez, for all his brilliance, can’t know what that’s like.
Whether he realizes or not, Morosi seems to be arguing that the Cy Young Award isn't necessarily representative of a pitcher's brilliance. This is kind of true!
The rest of the country may not want to hear it, but the AL East is home to the best baseball on the planet.
The only statement Morosi designates as controversial is his least controversial statement.
Now, the problem with doing Fire Joe Morgan-style deconstructions like this is that I, like Morosi, am in the business of writing original material, and not exclusively of throwing stones at my choice of material that others write. Once in a while my turn comes to write something dumb, and when I do, I deserve for people to give me the business. Morosi is a good writer who knows a lot about baseball, but I suppose it was just his turn to write something dumb.