Santana is unanimous Cy Young winner


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
AL/NL Cy Young Winners

MINNEAPOLIS -- Johan Santana joined an elite group of pitchers on Thursday afternoon when he became just the 14th pitcher in Major League history to win multiple Cy Young Awards.
Santana was named the unanimous winner of the 2006 American League Cy Young Award. It's the second time in his career that he has earned the honor bestowed by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

All of Santana's success has come quite quickly, as both Cy Young Awards have come within the past three seasons. Santana won his first Cy Young in 2004 during his first full season as a starter. In 2005, he finished third in the voting.

Santana is now regarded as one of best -- if not the best -- pitchers in the Major Leagues, and his accomplishments in 2006 were nothing short of dominant. The left-hander finished the year leading the Majors in ERA (2.77), strikeouts (245) and tied for first in wins (19) to give him the pitching Triple Crown. He also led the AL in innings pitched with 233 2/3.

Well known for his ability to step up his game in the second half, Santana did that once again this season as he went 10-1 with a 2.54 ERA in 15 starts after the All-Star break.

The value of an ace is often demonstrated in his ability to help the team every five days. But Santana's worth in 2006 proved to be even more than that, as he helped carry a rotation that saw its share of troubles.

With 12-year veteran Brad Radke limited by shoulder troubles and rookie phenom Francisco Liriano forced to miss the final two months of the season, Santana had to be a steadying force for the club. That's exactly what Santana was as the club went 27-7 in games with him on the mound.

Santana's efforts helped lead the Twins to their fourth AL Central title in the past five years under manager Ron Gardenhire. Just how much Santana meant to the club is shown by the fact that the pitcher has been mentioned as a candidate for the AL MVP award, usually reserved only for position players.

"He's really valuable in a lot of different ways," Twins general manager Terry Ryan said of his ace. "Giving us quality innings, his presence in the clubhouse and being an accountable guy in the community and with the media. There are not enough superlatives I could use to describe him. He is that important to our team."

And while the Twins had troubles to surmount in 2006, Santana wasn't without his own adversities to overcome. Santana battled through a split nail and a blister on his pitching hand during the year, as well as a sore hip and sore back at times.

PHOENIX -- Don't blame Brandon Webb if it takes him a little time to get used to hearing the phrase "2006 National League Cy Young Award winner" in the same sentence as his own name.
"Now [announcers will say] 'former Cy Young Award winner Brandon Webb,'" quipped Webb, named the league's best pitcher by the Baseball Writers' Association of America on Tuesday. "To have that title means a whole lot. That's the top award that a pitcher can get in a year, and obviously, the No. 1 pitcher in the National League this year. It just sends chills through your body. It's unbelievable."

The Arizona right-hander received 15 out of the possible 32 first-place votes and 103 points based on a 5-3-1 point system. San Diego's Trevor Hoffman finished second with 77 points and 12 first-place votes, while St. Louis' Chris Carpenter, the 2005 winner, was third with 63 points and two first-place votes.


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
I woudn't say no one was close Wang had a great year, and if Halladay would of remained healthy, and the bullpen wouldn't blow is leads then he would probably would of taken it. Now I don't want to be making excuses because everyone gets injuried. He did deserve it and I want to congratulate him.