Houston Astros pitcher Justin Verlander claimed his third Cy Young Award by claiming all 30 first-place votes, easily winning the honor over Dylan Cease of the White Sox as the American League’s top pitcher, and Sandy Alcantrara of the Miami Marlins was a unanimous winner of the NL Cy Young.
Verlander, 39, posted a 1.75 ERA and allowed 1.5 walks per nine innings, both career lows, for the World Series champion Astros. He was a unanimous winner with the Detroit Tigers in 2011 and he won his second Cy in 2019 with the Astros.
Cease was second in the AL voting and Alek Manoah of the Blue Jays third. Alcantrara was followed in the NL voting by Max Fried of the Braves and Julio Urias of the Dodgers.
Cease received 14 second-place votes and 10 third-place votes.
“I try to never get too complacent with what I’m doing but it definitely shows there was a really nice progression with what we are doing,” Cease, 26, said Wednesday.
“It’s one of those things that hasn’t sunk in yet. I’ve watched Verlander since I was a little kid. Almost doesn’t feel real, it’s very surreal.”
Cease made 32 starts and pitched a career-high 184 innings, finishing 14-8 with a 2.20 ERA and 227 strikeouts. He was second in the AL behind the Yankees’ Gerrit Cole (257) and allowed 126 hits. Opponents batted .190 against Cease, second only to Verlander (.186).
Cease set a major league record with 14 straight starts allowing one earned run or less. He was named AL Pitcher of the Month for June and July and came within one out of pitching a no-hitter against the Twins on Sept. 3.
Verlander did not pitch in 2021 while recovering from Tommy John surgery. The last time both winners won unanimously was in 1968 with Bob Gibson of the Cardinals and Denny McLain of the Tigers.