Friday, November 16, 2012

Pitchers R.A. Dickey and David Price capture MLB’s Cy Young Awards

R.A. Dickey of the New York Mets won Major League Baseball’s Cy Young Award as the best pitcher in the National League on Nov. 14 while David Price of the Tampa Bay Rays captured the American League honors. The Cy Young Award winners were voted on by the Baseball Writers Association of America.

The 10-year-veteran Dickey is known as a knuckleball pitcher who had never won more than 11 games in a season up until this year. He was named in first place on 27 out of the 32 ballots that were submitted and earned 209 voting points. Last year’s NL Cy Young winner and Los Angeles Dodger Clayton Kershaw came in second place in the voting with 96 points.

In the AL, Price a left-hander, beat last year’s winner Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers by just four points in a close voting session. It was the closest Cy Young ballot ever in the AL other than in 1969 when Detroit’s Denny McClain and Mike Cuellar of the Baltimore orioles finished tied in voting and shares the award.

Price was voted in first place on half of the 28 ballots that were submitted and was named in second place on 13 other ballots. He also received one vote for third place and ended up with 153 points. Verlander was named in first place on 13 ballots and also had 13 second-place votes as well as two votes for third place for a total of 149 points.

The 38-year-old Dickey had an exceptional season as he led the NL with 230 strikeouts, three shutouts, five complete games, 233.2 innings pitched, and 33 starts. His record for the season was 20-6 with an earned run average of just 2.73. He also became first pitcher in MLB history to pitch complete game one-hitters with at least 10 strikeouts in consecutive starts.

Dickey is the first 20-game winner with the Mets since 1990 when Frank Viola achieved the feat. His career record before this season was just 41-50 with an ERA of 4.34. The right- handed pitcher has previously pitched for the Texas Rangers, Milwaukee Brewers, Minnesota Twins, and Seattle Mariners. He joined New York in 2010 and went 11-9 in his first season with the club with an ERA of 2.84.

The 27-year-old Price broke into the Major Leagues in 2008 and the three-time All-Star went 20-5 this season with 205 strikeouts. His ERA of 2.56 was the best in the league. He went 19-6 in 2010 with an ERA of 2.72 and came in second place in Cy Young voting that season behind Felix Hernandez of Seattle. He became the first Tampa player to win a Cy Young when he was announced as this year’s recipient. Price held batters to a slugging percentage of .318, which was the lowest in the AL and led MLB with 23 starts of at least seven innings. He went 10-2 while pitching against fellow AL East teams with an ERA of 2.51.

Ian Palmer

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