Welcome to the second edition of theScore's 2020 Major League Baseball Cy Young Award rankings, in which we pick the top five pitchers from each league.
5. Hyun-Jin Ryu, Blue Jays
The Blue Jays received exactly what they hoped for from Ryu after signing the Korean lefty to a lucrative multi-year contract in free agency. He's posted a career-high 10 K/9 to go along with a 3.24 FIP. The 33-year-old has only allowed 10 earned runs in his last 45 innings (eight starts) while helping Toronto position itself to make the postseason for the first time since 2016.
4. Dylan Bundy, Angels
An offseason trade to the Angels from the Orioles resurrected the former top prospect's career. Bundy accrued a 4.67 ERA with a 1.33 WHIP across 127 games (103 starts) with Baltimore. He's improved his ERA quite a bit with Los Angeles, though the sample size is short as he's started just 10 contests. The 27-year-old ranks among the American League's best in multiple pitching categories, and he's earned the right to be in the Cy Young conversation.
3. Kenta Maeda, Twins
Another offseason acquisition is paying dividends for a starting hurler who was an afterthought on a loaded Dodgers rotation. Maeda is flourishing as a full-time starter with the Twins - an opportunity he never got in Los Angeles due to its depth. He leads the AL in WHIP while posting a sublime .158 batting average against, which also ranks at the top for qualified starters in the Junior Circuit.
2. Lucas Giolito, White Sox
The White Sox ace continues to rise through the ranks of baseball's best pitchers. Giolito's development hit another milestone this year after his first All-Star campaign in 2019. The 26-year-old righty threw a no-hitter while also recording 13 strikeouts against the Pirates in late-August. He owns a career-high 11.7 K/9 and has accumulated the third-best fWAR among AL hurlers.
1. Shane Bieber, Indians
Bieber is ruling the Junior Circuit in 2020, and unfortunately, fans won't get to enjoy the 25-year-old carving up hitters for much longer with the regular season ending in less than two weeks. The 2019 All-Star Game MVP is dominating in historic fashion. He leads all qualified MLB starters with a 1.53 ERA and 102 strikeouts while posting an absurd 14.2 K/9. The electric right-hander is the only pitcher to reach the 100-strikeout plateau so far this season, with Trevor Bauer the next closest at 83.
5. Dinelson Lamet, Padres
Even with Chris Paddack and Mike Clevinger in the Padres' rotation, it could be Lamet getting a Game 1 playoff nod. The 28-year-old looks fully recovered from Tommy John surgery in 2018, ranking top-10 in ERA, FIP, K/9, and swinging-strike percentage among MLB starters. Opposing hitters have only managed a .522 OPS against the hard-throwing Dominican, who has double-digit Ks in three starts and has sat down hitters via the strikeout in 34.1% of at-bats.
4. Corbin Burnes, Brewers
Burnes has been one of the highlights in a down year for the Brewers. Since becoming a full-time member of the rotation on Aug. 18, the 25-year-old finds himself ranked ahead of Jacob deGrom in FIP (1.41) and Bieber in ERA (1.45) when starting. Burnes has struck out batters at a remarkable 13.3 clip per nine innings and fixed a big problem by allowing just one homer in 50 innings after giving up 17 long balls in 49 frames last season. He's been otherworldly during his last four starts, striking out 38 and allowing one earned run.
3. Yu Darvish, Cubs
Darvish's first season-and-a-half with the Cubs was rocky, but he's been great for them in 2020. The 34-year-old ace uses an 11-pitch arsenal to great success, posting career lows in ERA, FIP, HR/9, BB/9, and is tied for the major-league lead in wins. He ranks second in pitching fWAR behind Bieber and allowed one earned run or less in seven consecutive starts from July 31 to Sept. 4. Darvish has scuffled a touch recently, but he still hasn't given up more than three earned runs during an outing all year.
2. Trevor Bauer, Reds
It's been a career year for Bauer, a testament to a pitcher who has already established himself as one of the league's best. The Reds hurler owns his lowest ERA and WHIP since debuting in 2012 and leads the NL in strikeouts. He also has two complete-game shutouts to his credit - albeit of the seven-inning type - and he's done an incredible job of limiting hits, with his 5.0 H/9 far below his 8.0 career average. He's also a lot of fun to watch when he pitches angry.
1. Jacob deGrom, Mets
Another year, another masterful campaign from deGrom. Before allowing three earned runs in two innings on Wednesday - which may have been the result of a hamstring spasm - the right-hander led the NL in ERA and ranked second in fWAR, FIP, and K/9. His 12.9 strikeouts per nine is a career-high, and he's been amassing punchouts with authority. The 32-year-old is throwing his fastball harder than ever, averaging 98.5 mph and touching 100 on the radar gun more than 15% of the time when he uses the heater. The Mets ace plans to make his last couple of starts, but even if he doesn't, deGrom has a good chance of becoming the first pitcher to win three straight Cy Young Awards since Randy Johnson was given the honor four consecutive times from 1999 to 2002.