Clayton Kershaw is a three-time National League Cy Young Award winning pitcher. Julio Urias finished as an NL Cy Young finalist in 2022. Walker Buehler was fourth in NL Cy Young voting in 2021. And throughout the Los Angeles Dodgers' history, they have unquestionably found success in terms of finding star pitchers. However, can Dustin May emerge as a Cy Young candidate in 2023?
May is looking to rebound after struggling in his return from Tommy John surgery in 2022. He features some of the best stuff in all of baseball, but control has been a concern at times. Additionally, he will need to remain healthy in order to have any chance of making a legitimate NL Cy Young case.
Without further ado, here's why Dustin May can win the 2023 NL Cy Young.
Dustin May's time to shine
The Dodgers need a pitcher to step up in 2023. Yes, Clayton Kershaw and Julio Urias are still going to lead the rotation. However, this pitching staff isn't as deep as it once was.
Dustin May can become the best No. 3 option in a rotation in all of baseball with a strong campaign. And the fact is that May arguably has more potential than any hurler in this rotation heading into 2023.
At just 25-years old, he's only now entering his prime. This is an age when big league pitchers tend to put everything together and break out. May also hasn't pitched in more than 14 games in a single season. He's never started more than 10 games in a single campaign either. With the exception of 2022, Dustin May has never finished with an ERA of above 3.63.
In 2020, when May made 10 starts for Los Angeles, he posted a sparking 2.57 ERA with 44 strikeouts. Many people were predicting a true Dustin May breakout season in 2021 before his year came to an early end due to injury.
Now healthy, Dustin May is going to be a crucial part of this rotation.
According to Baseball Savant, Dustin May relies on his sinker the most. He throws his sinker around 29 percent of the time and his blazing fastball 23 percent of the time. The two pitches work well off one another, as the sinker looks just like the fastball before it's late movement prior to crossing home plate.
Those two pitches alone will help May perform well in 2023. But he also features a quality assortment of breaking pitches, including a curveball and changeup. Additionally, he throws a cutter that almost darts off like a slider.
Dustin May is primed for a big season for a number of reasons. He got his post-injury rust out of the way in 2022. May is 25-years old and about to enter his prime. And his pitch arsenal suggests that big things are ahead.
2023 might be the year of Dustin May.