Clayton Kershaw adds NL MVP award to his resume

November 13, 2014

Just add another award to Clayton Kershaw's collection.

The Los Angeles Dodgers ace was named the 2014 National League Most Valuable Player today, earning 18 of 30 first place votes. The 26-year old left-hander is the first pitcher to win the National League MVP award since Bob Gibson did in 1968.

“An individual player is part of a greater whole--a player is part of a team. So any recognition of a single player is really just a reflection of the bigger picture,” said Kershaw. “I'm really humbled to receive the award for Most Valuable Player in the National League. Apart from previous recognition, this award feels significant in a different way. I never imagined getting to receive this honor."

Kershaw is the fourth Dodgers pitcher to win the NL MVP, joining Sandy Koufax (1963), Don Newcombe (1956) and Dazzy Vance (1924).

“Congratulations to Clayton,” said Koufax.  “It’s a special honor to a special pitcher and a special person.”

Added Don Newcombe. “There's no one more deserving of this award and I couldn't be prouder of this young man.”

While many typically might believe that a pitcher was less deserving of consideration than an "everyday" slugger, this year Kershaw made a truly compelling case for deviating from conventional wisdom.

While his 21-3 record and 1.77 ERA were impressive enough,  Kershaw astonishingly also led the NL (including pitchers and position players) in wins above replacement (WAR), according to both (led the Majors) and FanGraphs.

Furthermore, it could be argued that despite only 27 starts, Kershaw was the difference between the Dodgers being just above .500 and the NL West winning team they were. In Kershaw's 27 starts, the Dodgers went 23-4, and only 71-65 without him.

“Congratulations to Clayton,” said Dodger President and CEO Stan Kasten. “This MVP award further cements his place alongside the greatest Dodgers in franchise history.”

Kershaw's season was highlighted by: (1) the first no-hitter of his career, an 8-0 defeat of the Colorado Rockies in which only an error prevented a perfect game; (2) a 41 inning scoreless streak from June 13-July 1, and (3) an 11-game winning streak from June 2 - August 10.

By Staff of

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