Every year the Rockies have at least one hitter that puts up gaudy numbers that could win them the MVP award, but because they play 81 games at Coors Field, they're usually snubbed. That player was Larry Walker for years, Troy Tulowitzki for some time, and most recently Nolan Arenado.
Now, Rockies catcher Chris Iannetta is using that same Coors Field argument as he pleads for starting pitcher Kyle Freeland's case in the Cy Young voting.
The average era for the last 15 NL Cy Young award winners at Coors Field, in the year they won that Cy Young award is 4.18. @KFREE_21 has a 2.27 at Coors. At the very least, he should be in the conversation! @rockies @mlb Stats per @MosesMassena16.— Chris Iannetta (@Chris_Iannetta) September 7, 2018
Freeland is having a remarkable season for the Rockies, who are currently in first place, especially pitching at home as Iannetta mentions. The lefty is 7-2 in 12 starts at home with that sparkling 2.27 ERA.
To have that kind of season pitching under the difficult conditions of Coors is impressive and should at least warrant his name being in the conversation for Cy Young. However, the race is nationally regarded as a three-horse battle.
Updated odds to win NL Cy Young (@BovadaOfficial):— OddsShark (@OddsShark) September 5, 2018
Jacob deGrom -250
Max Scherzer +250
Aaron Nola +850
What is keeping Freeland from this conversation is his 3.51 ERA on the road, pushing his season total to 2.96. He has also has struck out only 145 batters, and compared to Max Scherzer, who leads the league with 260 punch outs, it's not even a contest.
Freeland should get an honorable mention, but the other three pitchers ahead of him have just had superior seasons. Jacob deGrom is the clear front-runner right now as he has a 1.68 ERA, which is over a point lower than Freeland's, to go along with 230 strikeouts.
Perhaps the league should then drop the whole "hitters benefit at Coors Field" argument in order to level the playing field and avoid this possible Cy Young conundrum.