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Cy Young Award

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In baseball, the Cy Young Award is an honor given annually to the best pitchers in the Major Leagues. The award was first introduced in 1956 by Commissioner Ford Frick in honor of Hall of Fame pitcher Cy Young who passed away in 1955. The award was originally given to the single best pitcher in the major leagues. In 1967, the year after Frick retired as Commissioner, the practice began of honoring one pitcher in each league.

The award is voted on by 28 members of the Baseball Writers Association of America. Each places a vote for first, second, and third place among the pitchers of each league. The formula used to calculate the final scores is a weighted sum of the votes: Score = 5F + 3S + T, where F is the number of first place votes, S is second place votes, and T is third place votes. The pitcher with the highest score in each league wins the award. If two pitchers receive the same number of votes the award is shared.

The current formula started with the 1970 season. Prior to that, writers only voted for the best pitcher and used a formula of one point per vote.

Controversy Edit

The Cy Young Award has become a hotly debated topic between baseball traditionalists and baseball "stat-heads". The stat-heads argue that the Cy Young Award is essentially given to the pitcher with the most wins, rather than for the statistics that a pitcher is entirely responsible for, such as ERA, WHIP, and K/BB ratio. The traditionalists, on the other hand, point out that the win is a valid way to determine a pitcher's effectiveness in leading a team. Thus, the Cy Young Award is not entirely one-sided, as in many occasions the pitcher leading the league in wins is not the honored individual, but the most dominant player on a playoff caliber team.

List of Cy Young Award winnersEdit

Major Leagues Combined (1956-1966) Edit

YearPitcherTeam RecordSavesERA
1956 Don Newcombe Brooklyn Dodgers (NL) 27-703.06
1957 Warren Spahn Milwaukee Braves (NL) 21-1132.69
1958 Bob Turley New York Yankees (AL) 21-712.97
1959 Early Wynn Chicago White Sox (AL) 22-1003.17
1960 Vern Law Pittsburgh Pirates (NL) 20-903.08
1961 Whitey Ford New York Yankees (AL) 25-403.21
1962 Don Drysdale Los Angeles Dodgers (NL) 25-912.84
1963 Sandy Koufax* Los Angeles Dodgers (NL) 25-501.88
1964 Dean Chance Los Angeles Angels (AL) 20-941.65
1965 Sandy Koufax* Los Angeles Dodgers (NL) 26-822.04
1966 Sandy Koufax* Los Angeles Dodgers (NL) 27-901.73

American League (1967-present) Edit

YearPitcherTeam RecordSavesERA
1967 Jim Lonborg Boston Red Sox 22-903.16
1968 Denny McLain* Detroit Tigers 31-601.96
1969 Mike Cuellar
Denny McLain
Baltimore Orioles
Detroit Tigers
1970 Jim Perry Minnesota Twins 24-1203.04
1971 Vida Blue Oakland Athletics 24-801.82
1972 Gaylord Perry Cleveland Indians 24-1611.92
1973 Jim Palmer Baltimore Orioles 22-912.40
1974 Catfish Hunter Oakland Athletics 25-1202.49
1975 Jim Palmer Baltimore Orioles 23-1112.09
1976 Jim Palmer Baltimore Orioles 22-1302.51
1977 Sparky Lyle New York Yankees 13-5262.17
1978 Ron Guidry* New York Yankees 25-301.74
1979 Mike Flanagan Baltimore Orioles 23-903.08
1980 Steve Stone Baltimore Orioles 25-703.23
1981 Rollie Fingers Milwaukee Brewers 6-3281.04
1982 Pete Vuckovich Milwaukee Brewers 18-603.34
1983 La Marr Hoyt Chicago White Sox 24-1003.66
1984 Willie Hernandez Detroit Tigers 9-3321.92
1985 Bret Saberhagen Kansas City Royals 20-602.87
1986 Roger Clemens* Boston Red Sox 24-402.48
1987 Roger Clemens Boston Red Sox 20-902.97
1988 Frank Viola Minnesota Twins 24-702.64
1989 Bret Saberhagen Kansas City Royals 23-602.16
1990 Bob Welch Oakland Athletics 27-602.95
1991 Roger Clemens Boston Red Sox 18-1002.62
1992 Dennis Eckersley Oakland Athletics 7-1511.91
1993 Jack McDowell Chicago White Sox 22-1003.37
1994 David Cone Kansas City Royals 16-502.94
1995 Randy Johnson Seattle Mariners 18-202.48
1996 Pat Hentgen Toronto Blue Jays 20-1003.22
1997 Roger Clemens Toronto Blue Jays 21-702.05
1998 Roger Clemens* Toronto Blue Jays 20-602.65
1999 Pedro Martínez* Boston Red Sox 23-402.07
2000 Pedro Martínez* Boston Red Sox 18-601.74
2001 Roger Clemens New York Yankees 20-303.51
2002 Barry Zito Oakland Athletics 23-502.75
2003 Roy Halladay Toronto Blue Jays 22-703.25
2004 Johan Santana* Minnesota Twins 20-602.61
2005 Bartolo Colón Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 21-803.48
2006 Johan Santana Minnesota Twins 19-602.77
2007 C.C. Sabathia Cleveland Indians 19-703.83
2008 Cliff Lee Cleveland Indians 22-302.54
2009 Zack Greinke Kansas City Royals 16-802.16
2010 Félix Hernández Seattle Mariners 13-1202.27
2011 Justin Verlander Detroit Tigers 24-502.40
2012 David Price Tampa Bay Rays 20-502.56

National League (1967-present) Edit

YearPitcherTeam RecordSavesERA
1967 Mike McCormick San Francisco Giants 22-1002.85
1968 Bob Gibson* St. Louis Cardinals 22-901.12
1969 Tom Seaver New York Mets 25-702.21
1970 Bob Gibson St. Louis Cardinals 23-703.12
1971 Ferguson Jenkins Chicago Cubs 24-1302.77
1972 Steve Carlton* Philadelphia Phillies 27-1001.98
1973 Tom Seaver New York Mets 19-1002.08
1974 Mike Marshall Los Angeles Dodgers 15-12212.42
1975 Tom Seaver New York Mets 22-902.38
1976 Randy Jones San Diego Padres 22-1402.74
1977 Steve Carlton Philadelphia Phillies 23-1002.64
1978 Gaylord Perry San Diego Padres 21-602.73
1979 Bruce Sutter Chicago Cubs 6-6372.22
1980 Steve Carlton Philadelphia Phillies 24-902.34
1981 Fernando Valenzuela Los Angeles Dodgers 13-702.48
1982 Steve Carlton Philadelphia Phillies 23-1103.11
1983 John Denny Philadelphia Phillies 19-602.37
1984 Rick Sutcliffe*† Chicago Cubs 20-603.64
1985 Dwight Gooden* New York Mets 24-401.53
1986 Mike Scott Houston Astros 18-1002.22
1987 Steve Bedrosian Philadelphia Phillies 5-3402.83
1988 Orel Hershiser* Los Angeles Dodgers 23-812.26
1989 Mark Davis San Diego Padres 4-3441.85
1990 Doug Drabek Pittsburgh Pirates 22-602.76
1991 Tom Glavine Atlanta Braves 20-1102.55
1992 Greg Maddux Chicago Cubs 20-1102.18
1993 Greg Maddux Atlanta Braves 20-1002.36
1994 Greg Maddux* Atlanta Braves 16-601.56
1995 Greg Maddux* Atlanta Braves 19-201.63
1996 John Smoltz Atlanta Braves 24-802.95
1997 Pedro Martínez Montreal Expos 17-801.90
1998 Tom Glavine Atlanta Braves 20-602.47
1999 Randy Johnson Arizona Diamondbacks 17-902.49
2000 Randy Johnson Arizona Diamondbacks 19-702.64
2001 Randy Johnson Arizona Diamondbacks 21-602.49
2002 Randy Johnson* Arizona Diamondbacks 24-502.32
2003 Eric Gagné Los Angeles Dodgers 2-3551.20
2004 Roger Clemens Houston Astros 18-402.98
2005 Chris Carpenter St. Louis Cardinals 21-502.83
2006 Brandon Webb Arizona Diamondbacks 16-803.10
2007 Jake Peavy* San Diego Padres 19-602.54
2008 Tim Lincecum San Francisco Giants 18-502.62
2009 Tim Lincecum San Francisco Giants 15-702.48
2010 Roy Halladay Philadelphia Phillies 21-1002.44
2011 Clayton Kershaw Los Angeles Dodgers 21-502.28
2012 R.A. Dickey New York Mets 20-602.73

(*) Denotes a unanimous selection, i.e., a player who received all first-place votes.

† Sutcliffe was traded mid-season on June 13. He went 4-5 with a 5.15 ERA with the Cleveland Indians before being traded to the Chicago Cubs where he went 16-1 with a 2.69 ERA to finish the season.

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