San Diego Padres: 2018 MVP, Rookie Of The Year, Cy Young
By Nick Stevens
The 2018 San Diego Padres Cy Young winner has to come out of the bullpen.
I listen to a lot of different baseball podcasts and on three different shows, the hosts played some version of “Padres pitcher or video game generated name.” Sure the bullpen featured names like Adam Cimber, Robert Stock, Trey Wingenter, Jose Castillo and others, but what this San Diego bullpen did in 2018 was pretty special. In fact, it was one of the top bullpen performances the National League has seen in decades.
Leading the way was this year’s Cy Young winner, Craig Stammen. Stammen finished with team-leading 2.3 fWAR and put in the best season of his nine-year career. The only MLB relievers to finish with a higher fWAR were Blake Treinen, Edwin Diaz, Josh Hader, and Jose Leclerc.
Logging 79 innings across 73 appearances, Stammen went 8-3 with a 2.73 ERA (2.19 FIP), a 1.04 WHIP, and 23 holds. He struck out 88 hitters and issued just 17 free passes. Both his walk/9 rate and home run/9 rate ranked in the top 10 of all relievers in baseball.
It is hard to justify giving this award to a starting pitcher on the roster after this past season and this bullpen deserves much more recognition than it received in 2018. Best of all, Craig Stammen wants to help lead this team to the playoffs and seems to genuinely enjoy his career as a member of the San Diego Padres. To that we say, congratulations on your 2018 Friars on Base Padres Cy Young Award.