Moving along in my “awards sub-set” thread for the decade, we spotlight the Cy Young Award winners of 1972 on what would have been a 1973 sub-set if I had my way:
Of course, the talk of the town was the once-in-a-lifetime performance
the Phillies Steve Carlton put in during his first season there after
coming over in a trade.
All “Lefty” did was post a phenomenal 27-10 record with a 1.97 earned
run average and 310 strikeouts, taking home not only the Cy Young but
the league’s triple crown for pitching.
He completed 30 of his 41 starts, and threw eight shutouts for a team that only posted 59 wins all season!
Granted, Carlton won 20 games the year before while still with St.
Louis, and already had a record-breaking 19-strikeout game in 1969, so
he wasn’t exactly “out of nowhere”.
But this was the year he made his mark on the game and was well on his
way to three other Cy Young Awards (the first to win that many), 329
wins and 4136 strikeouts.
Need less to say a Hall of Fame induction was a “gimmie”, and in 1994 he was named on 436 of 456 ballots.
On the American League side, we have another future Hall of Famer,
Gaylord Perry, who came in second place for the Cy Young Award in 1970
while still pitching for the San Francisco Giants. The very same year
his older brother Jim won the award pitching for the Minnesota Twins!
All Perry did in his first year with the Indians was post a record of
24-16, with a 1.92 E.R.A., five shutouts and 234 strikeouts, edging out
Chicago White Sox pitcher Wilbur Wood 64 points to 58.
Ironically, had Gaylord Perry won the award in 1970, this 1972 win would
have made him the first pitcher to win the award in both leagues.
Turns out, he would in fact end up being the first anyway when he took won the award six years later in 1978 while pitching for the San Diego Padres!
Amazing...Gotta love baseball and it’s rich history!