CLEVELAND — Cleveland Indians ace Shane Bieber, to no one’s surprise, was unanimously named the winner of the American League Cy Young Award on Wednesday evening on MLB Network.
"Today is a good day. It makes it much better that we were able to take this thing home and it was unanimous," Bieber said.
The award, given to the best pitcher in the American League and the National League, as voted on by members of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America, is the first of Bieber’s career.
"It's absolutely surreal. But with that being said, I never thought it was out of reach. It's a special time and it means a lot," Bieber said.
He joins former pitchers Corey Kluber who won in 2014 and 2017, Cliff Lee, who won in 2008, CC Sabathia, who won in 2007, and Gaylord Perry who won in 1972, as Tribe players to have won the Cy Young Award.
Bieber was favored to win the award by a landslide over Toronto Blue Jays' Hyun Jin-Ryu and Minnesota Twins ace Kenta Maeda due to his stellar performance throughout the season.
During the 2020 season, Bieber pitched 77.1 innings over 12 games, posting a .163 ERA, 122 strikeouts and eight wins. He became the fastest pitcher to reach 100 strikeouts in a season in MLB modern-era history, reaching the milestone in just 62 1/3 innings.
Thanks to his performance during the 2020 season, Bieber also earned the 2020 Major League Triple Crown, leading the league in wins, ERA and strikeouts.
Bieber is the first Indians player to earn the Major League Triple Crown award. Bob Feller won the American League Triple Crown in 1940, but did not lead the entire league in all three categories. Bieber is the first pitcher since Johan Santana in 2006 to earn the Major League Triple Crown.
He was the first player to win the award unanimously since Clayton Kershaw in 2014 and the first-ever Indians pitcher to be a unanimous winner.
A former Indians player walked away with hardware of his own Wednesday night as well.
Trevor Bauer, who was traded to the Cincinnati Reds in 2019, earned the National League Cy Young Award, edging out Chicago Cubs ace Yu Darvish and two-time winner Jacob deGrom of the New York Mets.
"No one is more deserving of the award than Trevor Bauer. I was truly pulling for him. I know he feels the same way, so it's special," Bieber said.
Bauer led the National League in ERA (.173) and WHIP (.80) while completing two shutouts during the 2020 season.
The award is Bauer’s first of his career and the first for the Reds.