If early returns are any indication, 2013 could be the year of the pitcher in Major League Baseball. Eight starting pitchers have totaled at least 50 innings and have earned-run averages below 2.00. How special is that? Well, consider that the last six Cy Young Award winners posted an average ERA of 2.45. And while eight starters with a sub-2.00 ERA is a crazy number at this point in the season, three pitchers came up just short of joining the club — Anibal Sanchez of the Tigers (2.05), Madison Bumgarner of the Giants (2.18), and Travis Wood of the Cubs (2.03). Here are the eight starters who are playing two-below.
(Editor's note: This was originally The Nasty Nine, but Detroit's Justin Verlander gave up eight earned runs in 2 2/3 innings against Texas on Thursday and saw his ERA rise from 1.93 to ... 3.17. Ouch.)