A potential candidate for the NL Cy Young Award will be on the mound at Citizens Bank Park tonight, but his name isn't Roy, Cole or Cliff.
Don't look now, but Arizona right-hander Ian Kennedy is 15-3 with a 3.12 ERA. He leads the NL in winning percentage and is tied for the league lead in victories. Kennedy is seventh in the NL in innings pitched and eighth in WHIP. If the season ended today, he wouldn't win the Cy Young Award, but he's certainly right in the thick of the conversation, along with the Dodgers' Clayton Kershaw and the Phillies' big three. A win tonight could go a long way toward vaulting Kennedy toward the top of the Cy Young conversation. Keep in mind that Kennedy already shut out the Phillies on April 25 in what was by far his best start of the season. That outing, in which Kennedy pitched a three-hitter with no walks and 10 strikeouts, earned him a game score of 91. If WAR is your cup of tea, then you're probably not feeling Kennedy as a Cy Young contender. His WAR is 3.2, behind 11 other NL pitchers, including all of the aforementioned pitchers, as well as non-contenders such as Madison Bumgarner, Jordan Zimmermann and Matt Garza.