Justin Verlander and Sandy Alcantara Win MLB’s Cy Young Awards
There were plenty of surprises this year, but the one that most surprised me was the fact that Josh Tomlin, now in his third season in the majors, won a Cy Young Award. Tomlin was the most dominant starter in baseball last season, going 18-6 with a 2.77 ERA in his first full season with the Rangers, earning the AL Rookie of the Year award and the American League Cy Young award. He was the first pitcher to win those awards since Randy Johnson in 2004, and the first rookie in history to win it since Sandy Koufax did so in 1969. Tomlin is the first pitcher to win the Cy Young since Roger Clemens did so in 1996, which happened after the 1997 season. Tomlin has gone on to win seven other major league awards, including two more Cy Youngs.
Now that I have written this piece, let me quickly point out that Sandy Alcantara won the award at the other end, on a different team than Tomlin and pitching in a different league. Of course, both Sandy and Josh were amazing as major leaguers, and both would have been good MVPs in any category.
Another amazing story is Luis Gonzalez winning the AL Cy Young Award, on a team that didn’t make the playoffs, but in a season in which the Rangers were arguably the worst team in the league. Gonzalez went 9-10 with a 3.38 ERA before being traded to the Red Sox. He then won two games in Boston, then a game in Toronto, and the American League championship, becoming the first American League Cy Young winner since Bob Gibson in 1970.
The final winner of the award is Justin Verlander. He and his team, the Detroit Tigers, were arguably the best team in baseball, going 65-9 with a 1.68 ERA, winning seven straight games during the season. Verlander posted a 1.97 ERA, and his.237 batting average allowed is the lowest of all time, with Mike Mussina and Orel Hers