Blue Jays Cy Young Award Seasons: Ranking the Best Winners

Blue Jays Cy Young
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There are four Toronto Blue Jays Cy Young Award winners. Through 2021, 122 have been given out, and 21 pitchers have won it multiple times. But, for the Blue Jays, four players won it, with only one of them winning it twice. Since it’s rare for a pitcher to win the MVP, the Cy Young Award was created for the best pitchers in the league. Each Blue Jay who won the Cy Young will be ranked based on WAR and ERA+. Here are the rankings of each Cy Young Award winner from the Blue Jays.

Blue Jays Cy Young Winners

5. Robbie Ray- 2021

Pitching stats: 13-7, 2.84 ERA, 154 ERA+, 248 SO, 1.04 WHIP, 193 1/3 IP

Ray’s 13 wins are tied for the fewest for a starting pitcher over an entire season to win the award. He matched that of the Seattle Mariners’ Felix Hernandez in 2010. Jacob deGrom won the Cy Young in 2018 with ten wins, the fewest overall by a Cy Young award-winning pitcher. Ray led the AL in ERA, starts, innings pitched, strikeouts, WHIP, and ERA+. Ray’s 248 strikeouts rand as third-most ever by a Blue Jay. Clemens’ 292 strikeouts in 1997 and his 271 in 1998 remain the top two.

4. Roger Clemens- 1998

Pitching stats: 20-6, 2.65 ERA, 174 ERA+, 271 SO, 2.65 FIP, 6.5 9/H

It’s fair to say that Roger Clemens had two great seasons north of the border. In his second season, he went 20-6 with a 2.65 ERA in 33 starts. But that wasn’t all. Clemens would win his second consecutive Triple Crown as the league leader in wins, ERA, and strikeouts. Despite his short-lived tenure in Toronto, Clemens’ ’97 and ’98 seasons are the best from any pitcher in franchise history.

3. Roy Halladay- 2003

Pitching stats: 22-7, 36 GS, 9 GC, 2 SHO, 3.25 ERA, 145 ERA+, 6.4 K/BB

Roy Halladay ran away with the Cy Young Award, posting a 22-7 record with a 3.25 ERA in 266 innings. In addition to this, he won 15 consecutive games from May 1 through July 27. Halladay pitched the first extra-inning shutout in the majors since Jack Morris in Game 7 of the 1991 World Series. He led the AL with 22 wins, 36 games started, and 266 innings pitched. Halladay tied for third in strikeouts with 204.

The Top Two

2. Pat Hentgen- 1996

Pitching stats: 20-10, 3.22 ERA, 156 ERA+, 10 CG, 3 SHO, 177 SO, 1,085 BF

At the time, Pat Hentgen edged Andy Pettitte of the New York Yankees to win the award in the closest voting since 1972. The right-hander bounced back following a dismal 1995 season where he had a 5.11 ERA and gave up a league-high 114 earned runs. Hentgen’s durability was a deciding factor for his first and only Cy Young. The two-time World Series champion went 20-10 with a 3.72 ERA. As well, he led the majors with ten complete games with 265 2/3 innings.

1. Roger Clemens- 1997

Pitching stats: 21-7, 2.05 ERA, 222 ERA+, 9 CG, 3 SHO, 292 SO, 2.25 FIP, 1.03 WHIP

After signing a four-year, $40 million deal with the Blue Jays, Roger Clemens put up a 2.05 ERA with 292 strikeouts over 264 innings. That was enough for the Rocket to win his fourth Cy Young Award of his career. In his first return to Fenway Park, Clemens did what he always does. He pitched eight innings with four hits and one earned run. Then, he struck out a season-high 16 batters as every batter who faced Clemens struck out at least once.

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Players Mentioned:

Roger Clemens, Roy Halladay, Robbie Ray, Pat Hentgen, Jack Morris, Andy Pettite