Trevor Bauer, one of baseball's top free agents, captured the National League Cy Young Award on Wednesday, receiving 27 of 30 first-place votes for 201 points from the Baseball Writers' Association of America.
He becomes the first pitcher in Cincinnati Reds history to win the prestigious award, something Tom Seaver, Johnny Vander Meer, Jose Rijo or Johnny Cueto never did as a Redleg.
Bauer posted a 5-4 record and led the NL in ERA (1.73), WHIP (0.795) and fewest hits per nine innings (5.1) in 11 starts. In September, he yielded two or fewer earned runs in each of his five starts, helping the Reds to their first postseason berth in seven years.
"It’s been the top personal goal that I have really since I won the Golden Spikes in college," Bauer told Yahoo Sports in a recent interview. "As soon as I won that, I replaced that goal with winning a Cy Young at the big-league level. I’ve had a picture of a Cy Young as my phone’s background for ten years now. Jim Palmer’s Cy Young."
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Reds pitcher Trevor Bauer led the league in ERA and WHIP this season. (Photo: Kareem Elgazzar via Imagn Content Services, LLC)
Yu Darvish (123 points) of the Chicago Cubs and two-time Cy Young winner Jacob deGrom (89 points) of the New York Mets finished second and third, respectively, in the NL voting.
2020 NL Cy Young: Trevor Bauer, Reds
Full voting details: https://t.co/BbdIP5gKnz
Now a free agent, Bauer becomes the first Cy Young winner to reach free agency in the same year since Greg Maddux in 1992.
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The Reds extended a one-year, $18.9 million qualifying offer to Bauer, a formality for top free agents, but he is expected to decline the offer.
Bauer, who was acquired by the Reds in a three-way trade on July 31, 2019, had a strong campaign in 2018 with the Cleveland Indians before he was sidelined with a leg injury in August. He finished the season 12-6 with a 2.21 ERA over 27 starts and sixth in the AL Cy Young voting.
Bauer, outspoken and brash, recently inked a deal with Lids that will allow him to create personalized hats and shirts. He will also unveil several customizations that can be added to any hat or jersey.
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