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Sunday, August 7, 2011

Weaver Raises Bar For Cy Young

Jered Weaver set a tough pace for his AL Cy Young competition to keep up with this weekend. Sure, it didn't hurt that he pitched against the Triple-A offense of the Seattle Mariners on Friday night. The Mariners have baseball's worst .280 team wOBA (weighted on base average) which is a full 10 points behind the next closest terrible team. It doesn't even look like the joke of a lineup the Astros are running out can catch the Mariners in futility this year and they're led by 5'3 Jose Altuve.

But back to Weaver, he pitched nine shutout innings allowing seven hits and one walk to eight strikeouts. He failed to pick up the win due to his own team's inept offense. Weaver leads the league with his 1.78 ERA and 2.58 FIP (fielding independent pitching). His 5.5 fWAR (Fangraphs wins above replacement) is just a shade, maybe one start, behind Justin Verlander's 5.7 and CC Sabathia's 5.9.

Sabathia had the roughest outing of the trio but he also had the most difficult matchup. Boston has his number this season and lit the big man up over six innings for seven runs on nine hits. On the opposing mound, John Lackey surprisingly managed to make it through six innings without giving up double digit runs, a feat Kyle Davies didn't know was possible. Speaking of Kansas City (awesome segue, me), I was stunned Verlander didn't take a no-hitter into the seventh inning against the Royals. In fact, Verlander only went seven innings giving up three runs on five hits with eight strikeouts.

Up next... Weaver dropped the appeal for his six game suspension after his temper and a fastball in the direction of Alex Avila's head got away from him last week. He will miss the Yankees series and be back on the mound Saturday in Toronto. The Blue Jays lineup is certainly no cupcake and even tougher in their hitter friendly home park.

Sabathia will toe the rubber at home against the Rays on Friday night and Verlander will be on the road in Cleveland to throw against the Indians on Thursday.

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