First off, we would like to congratulate both R.A. Dickey of the New York Mets and David Price of the Tampa Bay Rays. Both captured their first ever Cy Young Awards for being the best Pitcher in their respective Leagues. This got us thinking……does the Cy Young Award equal a future Hall of Fame induction? Actually we were quite amazed how many winners of the prestigious award were not even fringe candidates for Cooperstown.
From 1956 to 1966 there was only one trophy awarded to the best pitcher overall. In that time span, seven of ten winners were enshrined. This includes Warren Spahn, Early Wynn, Whitey Ford, Don Drysdale and Sandy Koufax; who won three times. The other three include Don Newcombe, who we have in our 100 for consideration, but two others who are never thought of at all. In 1958, Bob Turley won of the New York Yankees after posting the best season of his career. He never ever came close to that again and never received a single vote for the Hall. Vern Law won in 1960, and realistically only had two other seasons (other than his Cy Young winner) that was worthwhile. Unlike Turley, Law at least received some support from the Baseball writers, but never got more than three percent.
In 1967, two Cy Young Awards were given out in each league. There is a staggering amount of hurlers who won the award and did not get inducted (and is of course Hall of Fame eligible:
Mike McCormick (1967, NL, San Francisco) Zero HOF votes
Jim Lonborg (1967, AL, Boston) 0.8% vote in 1985
Denny McLain (1968 & 1969, AL, Detroit) 0.7% vote in 1979
Mike Cuellar (1969, AL, Detroit) Zero HOF votes
Jim Perry (1970, AL, Minnesota) 1.9% in 1983
Vida Blue (1971, AL, Oakland) 8.7% in 1993; on the ballot for four years
Mike Marshall (1974, NL, Los Angeles) 1.5% HOF vote in 1987
Randy Jones (1976, NL, San Diego) Zero HOF votes
Sparky Lyle (1977, AL, New York) 13.1% in 1988; on the ballot for four years
Ron Guidry (1978, AL, New York) 8.8% in 2000; on the ballot for nine years
Mike Flanagan (1979, AL, Baltimore) 0.4% HOF vote in in 1998
Steve Stone (1980, AL, Baltimore) Zero HOF votes
Fernando Valenzuela (1981, NL, Los Angeles) 6.3% HOF vote in 2003, off the ballot the following year.
Pete Vuckovich (1982, AL, Milwaukee) Zero HOF votes
John Denny (1983, NL, Philadelphia) Zero HOF votes
Lamarr Hoyt (1983, AL, Chicago) Zero HOF votes
Rick Sutcliffe (1984, NL, Chicago) 1.8% HOF vote in 2000
Willie Hernandez (1984, AL, Detroit) 0.4% HOF vote in 1995
Dwight Gooden (1985, NL, New York) 3.3% HOF vote in 2006
Bret Saberhagen (1985 & 1989, AL, Kansas City) 1.3% HOF vote in 2007
Mike Scott (1986, NL, Houston) 0.4% HOF vote in 1997
Steve Bedrosian (1987, NL, Philadelphia) 0.2% HOF vote in 2001
Orel Hershiser (1988, NL, Los Angeles) 11.2% HOF vote in 2006, off the ballot the following year
Frank Viola (1988, AL, Minnesota) 0.4% HOF vote in 2002
Mark Davis (1989, NL, San Diego) 0.2% HOF vote in 2003
Doug Drabek (1990, NL, Pittsburgh) 0.4% HOF vote in 2004
Bob Welch (1990, AL, Oakland) 0.2% HOF vote in 2000
Jack McDowell (1993, AL, Chicago) 0.8% HOF vote in 2005
David Cone (1994, AL, Kansas City) 3.9% HOF vote in 2009
Pat Hentgen (1996, AL, Toronto) 0.2% HOF vote in 2010
Wow….a lot of ZERO votes in there, not to mention sub 1%ers in there. We hate to say it, but in his late thirties, you can add R.A. Dickey to this list. At this stage the knuckleballer has a long way to go just to get to 100 wins and the odds are string that this amazing season will not be duplicated.
At the age of 26, David Price already has as many wins as Dickey (61). He is already a three time All Star, and could very well be on a Cooperstown career. OF course, at the age of 26, who knows!
Regardless, winning the Cy Young is an amazing accomplishment and though that does not translate to immortality, it should be respected and praised.