Originally posted on The Outside Corner  |  Last updated 11/1/11

The battle for the National League Cy Young award went back and forth in the second half, with the dominant Roy Halladay of the Philadelphia Phillies losing ground to Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers as the season went on. It would end up being a photo finish, with former top contender Jair Jurrjens falling completely out of the picture after battling injuries and ineffectiveness in the second half. Who would take the crown?

Midseason winner: Roy Halladay

VOTING RESULTS
1) Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers (40 points, five first place votes)
2) Roy Halladay, Phillies (40 points, four first place votes)
3) Cliff Lee, Phillies (28 points)
4) Ian Kennedy, Diamondbacks (12 points)
5) Cole Hamels, Phillies (6 points)
6) Madison Bumganer, Giants (6 points)
7) Yovani Gallardo, Brewers (1 point)
8) Matt Cain, Giants (1 point)
9) Chris Carpenter, Cardinals (1 point)

Wow. It ends in a tie, with Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers getting the nod due to having more first place votes. Despite an inferior fWAR in comparison to Roy Halladay of the Phillies (8.2 for Halladay, 6.8 for Kershaw), Kershaw won the all important "pitching triple crown", like Justin Verlander in the AL. Kershaw's ERA was a hair better than Halladay's, he won two more games, and he struck out 28 more hitters than Halladay. Where Doc set himself apart was a lower amount of walks (19 less to be precise) and five fewer home runs allowed. Halladay also threw a whopping 1/3 of an inning more than Kershaw. The battle between the two is really neck and neck, and you can't go wrong with either player. Maybe one of our staff members wakes up on the other side of the bed tomorrow, and votes for Halladay over Kershaw. Either choice is a proper one.

Cliff Lee rejoined the Phillies after being dealt away an offseason ago by Ruben Amaro, and he didn't disappoint in his return to the City of Brotherly Love. His ERA was third in the league, behind the two men ahead of him. He pitched in just as many innings as the pair, with just one less inning pitched on his resume than Halladay. His walk and strikeout rates fell between both pitchers. Pretty much, Lee did exactly what Amaro paid him to do. He performed like a Cy Young candidate, and could win the award in most other years. Lee's teammate, Cole Hamels, was also excellent as the third member of Philly's pitching trifecta. His 216 innings was second highest in his career, and his 194 strikeouts were third best. His 2.79 ERA was far and away a career best, and working with Lee and Halladay propelled him to a career low walk rate.

Ian Kennedy of the Diamondbacks came out of nowhere to be a solid arm for the Diamondbacks in the NL West this season. Kennedy's 21 wins were tied for the league lead with Kershaw, and he backed that up with solid outlying numbers: 198 strikeouts in 222 innings. No team is going to complain about that from a guy you didn't know what you were getting out of at the beginning of the year. Kennedy's NL West rival, Madison Bumgarner of the Giants, was another guy who the team didn't know what to expect out of. But Bumgarner was the best pitcher on a loaded Giants staff, even outperforming two-time Cy Young winner Tim Lincecum. Bumgarner struck out 191 in 204 2/3 innings while walking just 46, and looked like the top prospect that he was before he mysteriously lost his velocity.

As for the rest, Yovani Gallardo paced a good Brewers staff while striking out a batter per inning. Matt Cain was cursed with at terrible win/loss record again but kept his ERA under 3.00 (2.88 to be exact). And then, there's Chris Carpenter, who helped lead the Cardinals to a World Championship with a league leading 237 1/3 innings pitched.

[follow]

MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Five most anticipated September MLB call-ups
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Lochte to be summoned to appear in Rio, charged with making false report

Carlos Ruiz traded to Dodgers

Ezekiel Elliott reportedly arrived at training camp overweight

Olympian auctions off medal to help young cancer patient

Report: Dodgers have turned down lowball offers for Puig

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Jason Pierre-Paul’s lawsuit against Adam Schefter, ESPN will proceed

The Rock, Vin Diesel to settle 'rivalry' at WrestleMania 33?

Report: Browns trade former No. 6 overall pick Mingo to Pats

Harden organizing players-only minicamp with Rockets

Raiders file trademark applications for ‘Las Vegas Raiders’

U.S. Soccer hands Solo six month suspension for Olympic comments

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

A look at 2016 college football conference changes

The 20 best boxing movies ever

Will Perriman help Ravens find elusive WR success?

Jay Bouwmeester’s selection to Team Canada’s World Cup roster is a head-scratcher

Five MLB players with a lot to lose down the stretch

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for our favorite football movies

Bruce Arians on sideline video use: 'It helps bad coaches'

Hard not to be cynical about LeBron's 'Cleveland Hustles'

Familiar faces that won't be seen in the NFL this year

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The 20 best boxing movies of all time

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for fast food

What you need to know about the Champions League draw

Can the San Francisco Giants bust their teamwide slump?

A look at 2016 college football conference changes

Can Perriman's return help Ravens find oft-elusive WR success?

One Gotta Go: NFL legends bring the hate for our favorite football movies

Hard not to be cynical about LeBron James' 'Cleveland Hustles'

Ranking the uniforms of the NFL from worst to best

Familiar faces that won't be seen in the NFL this year

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker