Wednesday, February 19, 2014

1975 "CY YOUNG AWARD" SUB-SET: WHAT IF? 1957

Today we move along to 1957 on my imagined 1975 "Cy Young" sub-set to go along with the Topps "M.V.P." sub-set in the same set.
While the National league "winner" is a given being that Warren Spahn won the award outright that year, the folks at SABR picked Jim Bunning as the assumed winner for the A.L. since the award was not given to winners of both leagues at the time.
First off take a look at my card design:


Spahn easily won the award, garnering 15 of 16 votes for the award (White Sox pitcher Dick Donovan getting the only other vote). It would actually be the only time Spahn would win the award in his storied 21 year career, though he did finish second in the running three other times before he was through.
The 1957 season was a "typical" one for the southpaw pitching machine, as he finished with a league-leading 21 wins to go along with a 2.69 earned run average, 18 complete games, four shutouts ad even three saves in his 271 innings of work. 
Ho-hum right? After all, the man won 20 or more games an amazing THIRTEEN times in his career!
And don't forget, Spahn didn't pitch his first full season of work until he was 26 years of age!
We are easily looking at a 400+ game winner if it wasn't for World War II and his military obligation to his country.
But ending your career with 363 wins, 63 shutouts and a then record 2583 strikeouts for a left-hander isn't too shabby right!?
The man was a machine! And he's always been one of my favorite all-time players even if I never had the chance to see him pitch!
Over in the American League, the people at SABR chose a newcomer to the Majors, Detroit Tigers pitcher Jim Bunning, who just completed his first full year on the big league level, going 20-8 (leading the league in wins), along with a 2.69 E.R.A. in a league-leading 267.1 innings of work.
It was definitely a sign of things to come, as Bunning would go on to a Hall of Fame career with five 19+ game-winning seasons, as well as three strikeout crowns, ending his career with 2855, second all-time at the time of his retirement after the 1971 season, as well as 224 lifetime wins.
He pitched no-hitters in both leagues, his N.L. one being a perfect game against the Mets on June 21st, 1964, as well as becoming one of the first pitchers to win 100+ games in both the A.L. and N.L.
What's nice about this card design is that it features Bunning's "rookie card", which always commands a decent dollar for anyone trying to acquire it for their collection.
Nice virtual card featuring two future Hall of Famers!
Next, we take a look at 1958, featuring actual award winner Bob Turley of the Yankees, and the SABR pick for the N.L., well what do you know, our friend Warren Spahn again!

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