Marlins ace Sandy Alcantara has won the National League Cy Young award, the Baseball Writers Association of America announced. It was a unanimous victory, with Alcantara receiving all 30 first place votes. He was followed in the voting by Max Fried of the Braves and Julio Urías of the Dodgers.
Alcantara has been the presumptive favorite for quite some time, and the unanimous voting serves as a particular testament to the caliber of season he put together. The right-hander easily lapped the field in innings, soaking up 228 2/3 frames that cleared second-place finisher Aaron Nola by 23 2/3. Alcantara and Nola were the only Senior Circuit pitchers to throw multiple complete games; Nola went the distance twice, while Alcantara did so six times. He also faced a league-leading 886 batters, with Nola’s 807 batters faced an extremely distant second.
That kind of throwback, workhorse mentality was part of what set Alcantara apart from the rest of the league, but he continued to perform brilliantly on a rate basis. Among NL starters with 100+ innings, he ranked fourth in ERA (2.28) and sixth in ground-ball percentage (53.4%). His 23.4% strikeout percentage was more good than elite, but he rarely issued free passes and kept the ball on the ground while consistently going deep into games.
Along the way, the 27-year-old earned the second All-Star nod of his career. Alcantara had posted an ERA between 3.00 and 4.00 in each of his first four seasons with the Fish to emerge as a top-of-the-rotation caliber arm. Miami inked him to a $56MM extension last offseason, a deal that extended their window of control through 2027. That seemed a strong move for general manager Kim Ng and her staff at the time, and it now stands as an absolute bargain with Alcantara cementing himself upon the game’s top handful of pitchers.
It’s the first Cy Young nod for the native of the Dominican Republic, who’d never previously appeared on an awards ballot. Fried and Urías each picked up some support for the second time. The Atlanta southpaw finished fifth in Cy Young balloting in 2020, while the L.A. hurler placed seventh last year. Both earned a top-three placement for the first time this year, with sub-2.50 ERA showings. Fried twirled 185 1/3 innings of 2.48 ball, while Urías led qualified starters with a 2.16 ERA.
Fried picked up 10 second-place votes, and Urías was the runner-up on seven ballots. Nola, Zac Gallen, Carlos Rodón, Corbin Burnes and Edwin Díaz were the other players to receive at least one second-place vote. Nola and Gallen placed fourth and fifth, respectively. Rodón, Burnes, Díaz, Yu Darvish, Kyle Wright, Logan Webb and Ryan Helsley were the other players to appear on a ballot.
Full voting breakdown available here.