Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Verlander is Unanimous Cy Young Winner

We all knew that Justin Verlander would win the 2011 American League Cy Young Award.  The only question was whether he would be the unanimous choice.   In a recent post, I compared Verlander against all the top candidates and concluded that no reasonable person could vote against him.  Sure enough, he received all 28 first place votes cast by American League beat writers.

With seven points for each first place vote, Verlander scored 196 total points.  Other pitchers receiving votes are listed below:

Justin Verlander 196
Jered Weaver 97
James Shields 66
CC Sabathia 63
Jose Valverde 28
CJ Wilson 9
Danny Haren 7
Mariano Rivera 4
Josh Beckett 3
Ricky Romero 2
David Robertson 1

The first four names on the list matched my list.  Tigers closer Jose Valverde finished fifth with 28 points thanks, in part to a second place vote from Tigers beat writer Tom Gage.  While I think Valverde was quite valuable to the Tigers, it's difficult for me to rank pitchers with fewer than 80 innings pitched among starters with over 200 innings.  Other relievers receiving votes were Mariano Rivera and David Robertson, both of the Yankees.
I had Doug Fister sixth on my list but he was shut out in the real voting.  The likely reason was his 11-13 record which of course was a result of poor run support pitching for the Mariners in the first half.

Verlander was the ninth unanimous winner and the first since Minnesota Twins lefty Johan Santana in 2006.  He is also the first to win both the AL Rookie of the Year and Cy Young.  He also has a chance to win the MVP award next week. 

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