Phils' Halladay unanimously wins NL Cy Young Award
Roy Halladay arrived in Philadelphia to a standing ovation, a $60-million contract extension and the billing as baseball's top ace. That was before he threw a single pitch.
Doc delivered, and then some.
Halladay added another victory to an almost perfect season yesterday, unanimously winning the NL Cy Young Award and becoming the fifth pitcher to earn the honor in both leagues.
"It's by far the most fun I've ever had playing this game," he said on a conference call from Mexico, where he was golfing with teammate Mike Sweeney, Cardinals star Chris Carpenter and Padres pitcher Chris Young.
"It was everything I hoped it would be," Halladay said.
In the Year of the Pitcher, he became the only one ever to throw a perfect game and no-hitter in the same season.
Halladay was an easy choice after going 21-10 with a 2.44 ERA and 219 strikeouts. He led the league in wins and topped the majors in innings (250 2/3), shutouts (four) and complete games (nine).
Halladay received all 32 first-place votes in balloting by the Baseball Writers' Association of America.
Adam Wainwright of St. Louis was second and Ubaldo Jimenez of Colorado was third. San Francisco ace Tim Lincecum, who won the past two NL Cy Youngs, finished 11th.
"It's surprising," Halladay said. "There could have been a lot of cases made, strong cases."
Acquired from Toronto last December, Halladay quickly adjusted to a new league and added to the 2003 AL Cy Young he won with the Blue Jays.
Halladay threw a perfect game at Florida on May 29, then tossed a no-hitter against Cincinnati in his postseason debut.
Halladay's seven-year gap between Cy Youngs ties the longest in history, matching Tom Glavine.
"To be able to do it again after so long," he said, "means a lot to me."
Halladay joined Roger Clemens, Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez and Gaylord Perry as pitchers to earn the award in both leagues.
The AL Cy Young Award winner will be announced Thursday.
It could be a much more complicated race. Felix Hernandez went 13-12, but topped the majors with a 2.27 ERA. The Yankees' CC Sabathia went 21-7 with a 3.18 ERA and Tampa Bay's David Price was 19-6 with a 2.72 ERA.
Voting for the award ended after the regular season.