Prior to Saturday evening’s game in Milwaukee, Marlins manager Don Mattingly told reporters (Christina De Nicola) that Sandy Alcantara will not start this coming Wednesday. That is the last day of the season, so Alcantara’s 2022 work has concluded.
And, boy, did he ever do some strong work.
Friday night, Alcantara was a hard-luck loser in an eight-inning complete game and that was pretty fitting. He’s going to lead the majors in a blowout with six complete games. The only other pitchers with more than one complete game are Framber Valdez (with three) and Aaron Nola (two).
“My mentality is to go deep into games and finish my own games,” he told me at the All-Star break and he crushed the competition on this front all season — even in the face of playing for one of the worst teams in the league.
Alcantara went 14-9 despite playing for a team that is 65-92 entering Saturday. Five times the Marlins lost a game while Alcantara threw at least seven innings and allowed two runs or fewer.
The rest of the final line: 2.28 ERA, 178 ERA+, 2.99 FIP, 0.98 WHIP, 207 strikeouts, 49 unintentional walks, 228 2/3 innings and 7.9 WAR (baseball-reference.com version).
The NL Cy Young award should be his. Alcantara is the only NL pitcher over 200 innings and he’s breezed far past that mark. He is second in ERA and fourth in WHIP even with that huge workload, making way for a big lead in WAR. He’s also fourth in strikeouts and leads in win probability added.
Should Alcantara win the Cy Young, it would be the first time a Marlins pitcher has taken home the hardware. Kevin Brown (1996) and Dontrelle Willis (2005) both finished second in voting while with the club.
Alcantara ends up showing pretty well in the Marlins’ single-season record books too, unsurprisingly. He ties Brown at 7.9 for the most WAR and His ERA is third in club history behind Brown and José Fernández’s 2.19 in 2013. Alcantara is also third in WHIP behind Brown and Fernández, third in strikeouts, tied for fourth in complete games and fifth in innings (the highest since Willis in 2005).
Simply, it was arguably the best season for a pitcher in Marlins history and for his efforts, Alcantara is likely to bring home the first ever Marlins Cy Young.