Indians’ Bieber takes home AL Cy Young & Ramírez finishes second in AL MVP Race

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(AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

“Cleveland Indians starting pitcher Shane Bieber delivers in the first inning of a baseball game against the Chicago White Sox, Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2020, in Cleveland.” (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

Anna Meyer, Staff Reporter

The Baseball Writers’ Association of America honored two standout players from the Cleveland Indians on Wednesday, Nov. 11.

Indians right-handed pitcher Shane Bieber made history at 25 years old by being unanimously crowned the American League Cy Young Award winner, an award given to the top pitcher in each respective league.  

He also is the youngest Cleveland Indians pitcher honored with the AL’s Cy Young Award. 

The last time a pitcher earned this award unanimously was in 2014 when Los Angeles Dodgers lefty Clayton Kershaw took home this accolade for the NL.

The last pitcher in the AL to receive unanimous approval was former Detroit Tigers pitcher Justin Verlander in 2011. 

In a statement made by Bieber, he expressed his gratitude for those who supported him.

“That’s pretty special,” Bieber said. “I appreciate them for casting their votes for me. It means the world, it really does. I’m just happy. … It just makes it that much better that we were able to take this thing home and that it was unanimous.” 

Bieber’s amateur career began when he walked on at the University of California Santa Barbara. In 2016, the Indians picked him in the fourth round of the MLB Draft. A short two years later, the righty made his big league debut on May 31, 2018. 

For the Indians, Bieber takes the spot as the sixth AL Cy Young winner in the club’s history. 

The other winners include Gaylord Perry ‘72, C.C. Sabathia ‘07, Cliff Lee ‘08 and Corey Kluber ‘14 and ‘17. 

This is not the only accolade Bieber has received for his outstanding performance in 2020. The ace’s eight wins, 122 strikeouts and 1.63 earned run average resulted in him winning the MLB Pitching Triple Crown. 

“Cleveland Indians’ Jose Ramirez bats against the Detroit Tigers in the fourth inning of a baseball game, Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020, in Detroit.” (AP Photo/Jose Juarez) (AP Photo/Jose Juarez)

The Indians achieved another feat when the BBWAA announced the team’s third baseman, José Ramírez, came in second place for the coveted Most Valuable Player award for the AL.

He received a total of eight first-place votes, 17 second-place votes, three third-place votes and two fourth-place votes, following the AL MVP José Abreu of the Chicago White Sox.

Ramírez’s votes came based on his outstanding performance in 2020 for the Tribe. He arguably was the best hitter on the team with 45 hits, 64 runs, 17 home runs, 46 runs batted in, 10 stolen bases and a batting average of .292. 

Last season, Ramírez helped push the Indians into the postseason AL Wild Card game against the New York Yankees, batting .366 in the month of September, which earned him AL Player of the Month with 10 home runs and 34 RBIs. 

Bieber also made an outstanding showing in the vote for AL MVP. He came in fourth place in the voting. 

The outstanding performances in the 2020 season from both Bieber and Ramírez inches them closer to MVP status.

It is safe to predict that both Bieber and Ramírez will continue to climb closer to this goal in the upcoming 2021 season.