Reds: 5 instances Cincinnati pitchers almost won the NL Cy Young

CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 23: Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)
CINCINNATI, OH - SEPTEMBER 23: Trevor Bauer #27 of the Cincinnati Reds pitches during the game against the Milwaukee Brewers. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images) /
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Johnny Cueto #47 of the Cincinnati Reds throws a pitch.
CINCINNATI, OH – JUNE 17: Johnny Cueto #47 of the Cincinnati Reds throws a pitch. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /

5. Johnny Cueto (2014)

Winner:  Clayton Kershaw

What more can be said of the Reds best pitcher of the 21st century? Whether it was his myriad of pitching motions, flowing locks, or easy-going personality Johnny Cueto will always be beloved in the Queen City. Luckily for the Redlegs, his pitching success overshadowed everything else.

By the time the 2014 season arrived, Cueto had already established himself as one of the best pitchers in the game while leading the Cincinnati Reds to three postseason appearances. However, his final full season in Cincinnati would be his finest.

Winning a career-high 20 games, Johnny Cueto would lead the National League in starts, innings pitched, strikeouts, and fewest hits allowed per nine innings. Unfortunately, for the third time since 1981, a hurler from the City of Angels would best a Redleg in the Cy Young voting.

There’s no shame in being second best to the Dodgers Clayton Kershaw. Arguably the best pitcher of his generation, Kershaw was his typical dominant self in 2014. The future Hall of Famer would not only win the Cy Young but would add the NL MVP trophy to his mantelpiece as well.

Kershaw would go 21-3 with a league-best 1.77 ERA, six complete games, 0.86 WHIP, and 8.2 bWAR. In other words, a completely dominating season by any measurement. This would be Kershaw’s third, and for the time being final, Cy Young victory.

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Even though it didn’t happen in a Reds uniform Johnny Cueto played an integral role in helping the Kansas City Royals to the 2015 World Series title. Following a trade deadline deal with the Royals in 2015, Cueto would toss a complete game, one-run, two-hit performance against Jacob deGrom and the Mets in earning the Game 2 victory.