Lincecum earns second Cy Young
NEW YORK (AP) -- Talk about a freak -- Tim Lincecum needed just 15 wins to bag another NL Cy Young Award. Yup, throw out those old baseball cards. Wins and losses don't mean much anymore when it comes time for voters to pick baseball's best pitchers.
NEW YORK (AP) -- Talk about a freak -- Tim Lincecum needed just 15 wins to bag another NL Cy Young Award.
Yup, throw out those old baseball cards. Wins and losses don't mean much anymore when it comes time for voters to pick baseball's best pitchers. It's all about WHIP, FIP, BABIP and other lines of alphabet soup.
"It's turned into a game of complete numbers and statistics and what people do with that," Lincecum said.
Lincecum won the Cy Young Award on Thursday for the second straight year, emerging from one of the tightest votes in the history of the honor to become the first repeat winner since Randy Johnson.
Only 10 points separated the top three vote-getters. Chris Carpenter was second and St. Louis teammate Adam Wainwright finished third despite getting the most first-place votes.
Lincecum, nicknamed "The Freak" for his giant stride, led the NL with 261 strikeouts and tied for the league lead with four complete games and two shutouts.
The wiry right-hander attracts plenty of attention on the mound with his shoulder-length brown hair and twisting delivery. But it was his 15 victories -- the fewest for a Cy Young starter over a non-shortened season -- that were really noticeable for the award winner.
The 2009 honors for Lincecum and Kansas City Royals ace Zack Greinke reflect a recent shift in how pitchers are evaluated. The focus has changed to more developed statistics, including some that even take into account team defense.
Greinke equaled the previous low of 16 wins for a non-shortened season when he won the AL award on Tuesday. Afterward, he talked all about FIP, a mathematician's dream that stands for Fielding Independent Pitching.
Lincecum has his own favorite indicator.
"To say which one I look to the most, I would just say WHIP," he said, referring to walks plus hits allowed per inning, "just because you just limit the amount of baserunners that can hurt you."