In what should come as no surprise to anyone, Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers took home the 2013 NL Cy Young award, the second time in three years he's been given the honor. Kershaw was dominant, going 16-9 with a 1.83 ERA. His ERA topped the NL for the third consecutive year and led all major league pitchers.
Jordan Zimmermann of the Nationals place seventh in voting this year with 21 points, capping an All-Star campaign for the 27-year-old. Zimmermann's 19 wins were tied for the most in the National League and were second-best in team history.
Zimmermann was just the third Nationals player to show up on a Cy Young ballot since the team moved to Washington. Just last year Gio Gonzalez placed third after leading the majors in wins, and Chad Cordero in 2005 finished fifth with one point.
Here is the full 2013 NL Cy Young ballot:
Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers - 207 points
Adam Wainwright, Cardinals - 86
Jose Fernandez, Marlins - 62
Craig Kimbrel, Braves - 39
Matt Harvey, Mets - 39
Cliff Lee, Phillies - 32
Jordan Zimmermann - Nationals - 21
Zack Greinke, Dodgers - 18
Madison Bumgarner, Giants - 3
Francisco Liriano, Pirates - 3
As you see above, Zimmermann wasn't the only member of the NL East division represented. Fernandez of Miami, Kimbrel of Atlanta, Harvey of New York and Lee of Philadelphia all placed higher than Zimmermann. All five players had excellent seasons for their respective teams.
There was one point in the season when Zimmermann appeared to be a favorite for the award. At the All-Star break Zimmermann was cruising through MLB lineups with a 2.58 ERA through 132 1/3 innings. He was easily the Nats' most consistent pitcher and arguably their ace.
But after sitting out the All-Star game in New York because of a stiff neck, Zimmermann returned a less effective pitcher. In the second half of the year he posted a 4.33 ERA in 81 innings.
Placing seventh is surely an honor for Zimmermann who is a veteran of Tommy John surgery. He has now put together three straight seasons of at least 160 innings pitched as an elite starter. His future is certainly bright and could hold many more appearances on Cy Young ballots.