2024 MLB Cy Young Award Odds: Spencer Strider Early Favorite in the NL

Power pitchers get powerful respect. As MLB hits full stride this week, oddsmakers bestow short betting odds on strikeout leaders in MLB Cy Young Award futures.

Spencer Strider, the current NL favorite at DraftKings, had a major-league high of 281 Ks last season. Kevin Gausman over in the AL had 237 Ks.

Dominating baseball’s power category may not guarantee a Cy Young Award, but doing well is a prerequisite. Here’s a capsule review of the top contenders.

Check odds at all the top sportsbook apps because bookmakers offer enough of a gap with many players to give gamblers good deals.

MLB Cy Young Award Odds

National League


The top two betting choices, Strider of the Atlanta Braves and Wheeler of the Philadelphia Phillies face each other Thursday on Opening Day.

Spencer Strider +450

Strider looks like he hasn’t even broken stride since last season. His spring-training stats were impressive, with 35 strikeouts in 22 2-3 innings. He gave up two — count them — two runs.

Pitchers are often ahead of hitters at this time of the year anyway, but these numbers look eye-opening when coupled with his last two regular seasons.

Strider authored a breakout campaign in 2023. He went 20-5 with a 3.86 ERA and 1.09 WHIP. The ERA was a little high, but he played often enough with big leads that it could be partially expected.

Sparked by Strider, the Braves won a major-league-best 104 games last year. Strider’s accolades don’t stop there.

In the past two years, he struck out 483 batters, the most in baseball. Strider has also produced 17 double-digit strikeout games, the most in the majors, over the last two years.

That’s even more significant, considering he spent the first two months of the 2022 season in the bullpen. 

Zack Wheeler +800

The Phillies will spare him when possible. Wheeler threw 192 innings last year and compiled 212 strikeouts in a 13-6 mark.

That philosophy paid dividends post-season as a strong Wheeler notched three playoff victories, including two in Philadelphia’s seven-game loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks in the Division Series playoff.

Wheeler signed a 3-year, $126 million extension in the offseason and came up with a new pitch, a splitter, during spring training.

How hungry is he after the new contract, and will Philly try to maximize Wheeler, who will turn 34 on May 30, in the post-season?

Logan Webb +950

His ERA for spring training was 9.00 in 17 innings.

Webb doesn’t put much stock in spring training numbers and says he is ready for Opening Day against the San Diego Padres. He was 11-13 with a 3.25 ERA and 1.07 WHIP with 194 strikeouts last year.

These are not exactly Cy Young numbers, but they indicate someone who could have a good season once he figures everything out. 

Blake Snell Saga

Snell only reached the radar of some gamblers last week when he signed with the Giants. He’s going to be used sparingly until getting up to speed.

Snell was 14-9 with a 2.25 ERA, 234 strikeouts, and a 1.19 WHIP last year.

He became the 7th player to win the Cy Young Award in each league and the first to claim both of his (2018, 2023)  in the legalized sports-betting era. The others (Max Scherzer, Gaylord Perry, Pedro Martinez, Roger Clemens, Roy Halladay, and Randy Johnson) came earlier.

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American League


Kevin Gausman +650

He finished third in the voting last year after a 3.16 ERA and an American League-high 237 strikeouts with the Toronto Blue Jays. He was a power pitcher in his prime. Always a threat.

Framber Valdez +800

He’s never too far from putting it all together.

Valdez was only 12-11 last year but reached 200 strikeouts for the first time and tossed a no-hitter against the Cleveland Guardians.

His strikeout-to-walk ratio climbed to an impressive 3.51, which helped nudge his WHIP to an exceptional 1.13. Valdez has been steadily effective throughout his career.

Bettors may believe he can produce that one big season with a  15-20% improvement that snares the Cy Young Award.

Corbin Burnes +800

Always contends and is a previous Cy Young Award winner with the Milwaukee Brewers in 2021. He’s in the prime of a stellar career and makes a major free-agent move to the Baltimore Orioles.

Burnes is as good as it gets over the last four years. His WHIP has been 1.07, 0.97, 0.94 and 1.02. He has reached 200 or more strikeouts in three successive seasons.

He is dealin’. And the Orioles hope to ride his gifted arm into a deeper post-season run.

Cy Young Award Betting Patterns

Repeat winners are unlikely.

There hasn’t been an NL back-to-backer since Jacob de Grom of the New York Mets in 2018 and 2019. Pedro Martinez is the last American League repeater with the Boston Red Sox in 1999 and 2000.

That pattern has an excellent chance to remain. Reigning AL winner Gerrit Cole will miss at least two months with inflammation.

NL winner Blake Snell just recently signed with the San Francisco Giants. He won’t hit the ground running but will start on Sunday against the San Diego Padres.

Live Cy Young Longshots

Luis Castillo, Seattle Mariners

Career-best 197 innings pitched and 219 strikeouts for the Seattle Mariners last year. Showed a tremendous WHIP of 1.09.6 and went 14-9.

Pitched better than his record indicated. If he can clear 200 innings and keep the other numbers intact, he can do it.

Logan Gilbert, Seattle Mariners

Has improved for three straight years. Whip has dipped to 1.08 and strikeouts went from 128 to 174 and then career-best 189 last year. Final record of 13-7.

Can he get another 20 strikeouts, steal a couple victories, and shave the WHIP slightly?

If so, he’s quite a price.

Cy Young Winners from Previous Seasons

Robbie Ray, 2021 | Live Odds:

Will be out until at least May after Tommy John surgery.

Shane Bieber, 2020 | Live Odds:

Live dog with Cleveland Guardians. Had 1.56 ERA in spring training. Missed two months last year with inflammation. That can always come back.

Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander have three Cy Youngs but are considered well past their prime. Scherzer is projected to miss nearly half the season with a herniated disc.


About the Author
Dave Bontempo

Dave Bontempo

Dave Bontempo is an award-winning writer and broadcaster, who has covered the sports industry since the 1970s. He won the Sam Taub Award for Excellence in Boxing Broadcasting by the Boxing Writers Association of America in 1997, and is in the New Jersey and Atlantic City Boxing Halls of Fame. Bontempo has broadcast major fights all over the world. The advent of legalized sports wagering shifted his focus to this exciting new industry in 2018.

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