Johnson Wins Cy Young Award


Randy Johnson became only the second pitcher to win Cy Young Awards in both leagues, beating out Houston's Mike Hampton today in the National League vote.

The Big Unit, a 6-foot-10 left-hander for the Arizona Diamondbacks, led the league in ERA and led the major leagues strikeouts.

He received 20 first-place votes, 11 seconds and one third for 134 points in balloting by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.

"I'd like to think this award isn't solely based on wins and losses," said Johnson, 17-9 with a 2.48 ERA. "There was a lot more to the season I had than wins and losses. Quite honestly, I feel still this was the best year I had in my career."

Johnson, who led the NL in complete games with 12, had 364 strikeouts in 271 2-3 innings. He finished 19 strikeouts short of the strikeout record set by Nolan Ryan in 1973, winding up with the fourth-highest single-season total.

He struck out 10 or more 23 times, matching the record Ryan set with the California Angels in 1973.

In seven of Johnson's losses, Arizona scored two runs or fewer, including a stretch in which the Diamondbacks were shut out in four straight starts of his. He had a 1.41 ERA in those games.

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    Randy Johnson accepts Cy Young Award.(AP)
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  • "I didn't dwell on it," Johnson said. "There were a few players who came up during the course of the year and said I handled myself pretty well. That meant more than any win I could have had."

    Hampton, who went 22-4 and led the NL in wins, was second with 11 first-place votes, 17 seconds and four thirds for 110 points. Atlanta's Kevin Millwood was third with one first, four seconds and 18 thirds for 36 points.

    "I don't think the voters could have gone wrong picking either of the three," Johnson said.

    Johnson joined Gaylord Perry as the only pitchers to win Cy Youngs in each league. The 36-year-old Johnson won the AL Cy Young with Seattle in 1995. Perry won with Cleveland in 1972 and with San Diego in 1978.

    He became only the second pitcher since 1991 to break the hold on the award by Atlanta's Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine and John Smoltz. After winning for Chicago in 1992, Maddux won the next three for the Braves; Glavine won in 1991 and 1998, and Smoltz won in 1996.

    Interrupting their run was Pedro Martinez, who won it for Montreal in 1997 and is expected to become the third two-league winner when the AL voting is announced Tuesday.

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