Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jake Arrieta has been voted the National League Pitcher of the Month for the month of September. Arrieta, who was also voted NL Pitcher of the Month for August, becomes the first NL pitcher to win the award in consecutive months since Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers won in June and July of 2014 en route to the Cy Young Award.
The right-handed hurler was 4-0 in five September outings with a Major League-best 0.45 ERA (2 ER/40.0 IP). Arrieta held opposing hitters to a .148 batting average, which was the second-lowest mark among qualifying ML pitchers last month, while ranking fifth among NL hurlers in innings pitched (40.0) and sixth in strikeouts (39). The Texas Christian University product allowed just 20 hits during the month and issued only four walks.
Arrieta's September ERA was the lowest by a Major League pitcher during the month of September since Minnesota's Johan Santana notched the same mark in September 2004 during his Cy Young Award-winning campaign. The last NL pitcher to post a September ERA of 0.45 or lower was Hall of Famer Greg Maddux, who had a 0.29 ERA (1 ER/31.0 IP) in 1995 with Atlanta during his Cy Young Award-winning season. Arrieta capped the month with 7.0 shutout innings, permitting just one hit, in a 4-0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates at Wrigley Field on September 27th. In the outing, Arrieta extended his Wrigley scoreless streak to 40.2 innings, which, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, is the longest such streak at Wrigley in its 101-year history. The previous best streak was held by Hall of Famer Bob Gibson of the St. Louis Cardinals, who tossed 37.0-scoreless frames at the historic ballpark spanning the 1965 and '66 seasons. With the strong September, Arrieta finished the season with a Major League-best 22 wins (22-6) and a 1.77 ERA, which was baseball's second-lowest mark.
Other pitchers receiving votes included Kershaw (5-1, 1.84 ERA, 58 SO, 44.0 IP) and Washington's Stephen Strasburg (2-1, 1.48 ERA, 50 SO, 30.1 IP).
The National League Pitcher of the Month for September, Jake Arrieta, will receive a specially designed trophy, suitably engraved, to commemorate his performance.