Blog Entry

Love Letters: Readers take bite of Cy Felix

Posted on: November 19, 2010 3:12 pm

Some excellent and very well-reasoned responses to my defense of Felix Hernandez's AL Cy Young award this week. In fact, this is the best batch of letters in a long time. Nice to hear from everyone. ...

From: Henry H.
Re. Felix gets his Cy due, thanks to slowly changing outlooks

This vote reflects sportswriters who think they are smarter than the game. You showed Felix's stats against AL east in 5 games! Did he not pitch against the Rays? If not, the vote is more of a travesty. If he actually pitched in the AL East all year long, he would have had something like 15-17 starts against better lineups than he faced routinely -- more chance to explode that ERA. Tougher fans, more pressurized games -- no risk for him where he was. Too small a sample against the best teams in the league. Imagine how great he would have been if he could have pitched in AAA all year long! This isn't old' evaluation technique versus new evaluation technique. This is dopey sportswriters trying to show how smart they are. Pitchers are paid to win. The best pitchers win against the toughest competition. This is vote is crap.

To answer your question, Hernandez did not start against Tampa Bay this year. And in my heart, I agree with you: Pitchers SHOULD BE paid to win. Some are. But anymore, most are paid to keep their teams in games and eat innings. I don't think it was sportswriters thinking they're smart. I think this vote was sportswriters trying their best to get it right. I think they did because, as I pointed out in the column, this was a very unique year for Hernandez. But I'm with you in hoping this is an aberration rather than the coming norm.

From: Jay T.

Though your opinion on the matter has merit, I cannot support it. The pitchers that finished second and third respectively both were better candidates. Felix pitched in the AL West, which was the Rangers then nobody else, where as Price and CC both had to deal with three definite powerhouses of the division. Did Felix have a great year? Yes. But I am sorry to say that 13 wins, when most of your games are against weaker opponents, should not get you a Cy Young.

Tough call. And I'd say your opinion has merit as well.

FROM: Andy

I have no problem with Felix Hernandez winning. My problem is with CC ending up third. The Yankee Love has got to stop. He had a worse season than a handful of other pitchers -- Trevor Cahill, Clay Buchholz and Jered Weaver all had better ERAs, and better WHIPs. All CC had was wins, which are easy to come by when you are a Yankee. Further, somehow he basically got the same point total as Price, which is a joke. Price's ERA is almost a 1/2 a run better than CC's, and CC did not have to pitch against the best team money can buy. Plain and simple, there were several pitchers better than CC in the AL, so people have got to stop handing the Yankees everything.

I take it you don't own a copy of Sinatra's New York, New York.

FROM: Jack H

Given the same sabermetrics Felix Hernandez had, would he win the Cy Young if he were 0-25? Now that I think about it, I would vote for Price. Very good W-L and a good ERA, etc. I could just as well argue that Hernandez lost seven in a row early in the year before his team was eliminated, and demoralized his team and although he pitched great, the team basically packed it in. We have now said that for Cy Young, wins mean nothing.

I hope that's not what we've said. I really do. And if it is, then we need to veer back in the other direction.

Likes: Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central playing in the Michigan state high school football semi-finals on Saturday against Constantine at a neutral site in Jackson. Good luck to the green-and-gold Falcons. Another great season, and it's still rolling.

Dislikes: Been so busy with things this week that I haven't even had a chance to dig into the new Bruce Springsteen box set celebrating Darkness on the Edge of Town that was released Tuesday. All I did was open it, and the packaging is incredible. Cannot wait to dig into the CDs and DVDs.

Rock 'N' Roll Lyric of the Day:

"Some folks are born into a good life
"Other folks get it anyway anyhow
"I lost my money and I lost my wife
"Them things don't seem to matter much to me now
"Tonight I'll be on that hill 'cause I can't stop
"I'll be on that hill with everything I got
"Lives on the line where dreams are found and lost
"I'll be there on time and I'll pay the cost
"For wanting things that can only be found
"In the darkness on the edge of town"

-- Bruce Springsteen, Darkness on the Edge of Town



Since: Sep 15, 2006
Posted on: November 24, 2010 11:50 am

Price was definitely the Cy Young pick

David Price had a superb year.  He pitched in MLB's toughest division, and regularly against two super teams, and still had great numbers.  He is "the man" in the AL to be Cy Young Award winner.  Watch out for Price next season, he is going to be lights out good!

Since: Nov 22, 2010
Posted on: November 22, 2010 8:00 am
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Apr 8, 2009
Posted on: November 21, 2010 7:37 pm

Love Letters: Readers take bite of Cy Felix

I am sorry maybe I should have made myself clear.  First I watch the National League so in reality I don't care who wins the Al Cy Young, and no I don't have an east coast bias If I had a vote I would have picked David Price.  The whole point is if winning doesn't matter then what you are left with is the Mets.  If winning is irrelevant then you are left with the METS.  Would you give the World Series to the Mets?  no.  Winning is the stat that matters most of all stats.  Is Jim Kelly a winner because he almost was a winner 4 times?  No.  And if you ask him he would admit as much because he is a man.  Felix is a great pitcher, but no pitcher with a 13-12 record deserves to be a Cy Young winner.  Compare that with Greg Maddux and I hate Greg Maddux, but it simply does not compare.  You can pull out all the WAR and WAP and WIZZ and all the other stats that no one pays attention to all you want. 13-12 is all that matters.  FYI I did not watch Seattle games because no one would broadcast such a pitiful display on the East Coast.  BUT we did trade the mariners Cliff Lee, we knew all about the pre season hype and Cliff and Felix did not carry the weight two stud No. 1's are supposed to, and you think that deserves an award?  Come on now.  If anyone suffered bias it was CC with anti Yankee bias, but I don't care I would have voted for Price, because he was a winner.  If you are dominant you win. 

Since: Dec 28, 2006
Posted on: November 21, 2010 1:32 pm

Love Letters: Readers take bite of Cy Felix

This was a stupid F'ing post.  Like you said, Felix wasn't a loser, he was in fact a winner, you can't argue this.  To say Felix and Cliff were responsible for the Mariners bad start from the "blocks" is also as dumb of a thing I've ever heard.  What F'ing Mariner team did you watch?  "Felix is the biggest fraud in sports".....Really?  Are you serious or retarded jackass!  To call the sportswriters the "dumbest people on the planet" makes you the biggest F'ing retard to ever learn to type.  Your just pissed you went to sleep with a 10 and woke up with a 2, and you realized that she was a he.  Stupid bastard.

Since: Mar 25, 2009
Posted on: November 20, 2010 11:16 pm

Love Letters: Readers take bite of Cy Felix

First off let me start off by saying Felix Hernandez deserved this CY Young. This is just typical east coast fans who believe every team and every league in the east is superior to the rest of the country. Wins is one of the most meaningless stats in baseball for a pitcher and that has been known for years as it is only a reflection of how good of a team you play on. Anyone who disputes that is just proving their ignorance. Now that is not to say that ERA is the best measure to determine a pitchers worth (I personally like WAR and WPA but most people still dont use sabermetrics as much as they should) but it is a more valuable statistic than wins. I would be more understanding of these peoples points of view if they at least admitted that Felix had a great year rather than trashing him and saying "Felix is the biggest fraud in sports"as these statments have no merit. People need to learn to be objective when looking at awards, i bet this is a person who also was glad Derek Jeter won the gold glove when he was a -4.7 defender according to UZR. I know im jumping around a little bit but to circle back to my main point what CY Young voting is based on is finding the pitcher who was the most dominant. I will give CC Sabathia his credit he was a dominant pitcher but he was not the most dominant pitcher this year.

Since: Apr 8, 2009
Posted on: November 20, 2010 9:01 pm

Love Letters: Readers take bite of Cy Felix

Felix winning is the worst most degerading thing to happen to a sports award since someone having to give back the Heisman.  Felix won this award because there is a terrible trend in this country where everyone has to be a "winner" even when you aren't.  Felix wasn't a loser but he was a barely winner, and the responder who said he lost seven in a row to start the season to bury his team was right on.  Him and Cliff Lee basically buried that team before they ever got out of the blocks, they were supposed to be this super foundation for the team to lean on and instead the team got blamed for them not performing.  Also the guy who said playing against no pressure is meaningless, it can also be said that during the year teams play down to their competiton, maybe a factor in his era was the fact his team was terrible.  This was a vomitous choice of horrendous stature not yet fully realized.  Dave Stewart would be rolling over in his grave if he were dead, that guy was a 20 year winner year after year and couldn't win the award and this guy wins with 13 wins?  Felix is the biggest fraud in sports, there is more pressure being the Red Sox or Yankees 5th starter then there was on Felix all year.  Teams got more jacked up and ready to compete playing the Royals then the Mariners.  This is a TRAVISHAMOCKERY!  Clearly sportswriters are teh dumbest people on the planet.  Maybe if they stopped stroking and sniffinf the nether regions of the leagues top stars they could get their heads out of their crack to think this properly.  Right now you are all doing the walk of shame, buyers remorse the night after getting drunk with a date that looked great at last call.  For shame on all of you.  You destroyed your credibility, all of you.

Since: Sep 30, 2008
Posted on: November 20, 2010 1:29 pm

Love Letters: Readers take bite of Cy Felix

Your quote - "Oh, and David Price and CC Sabathia both said they would have voted for Felix." This is called being humble and showing good sportsmanship. What did you think they'd say?

Since: Dec 28, 2006
Posted on: November 20, 2010 12:36 pm

Love Letters: Readers take bite of Cy Felix

Guess who lost 316 games over his career?  Which is a MLB record.

Since: Feb 5, 2009
Posted on: November 20, 2010 12:23 pm

Love Letters: Readers take bite of Cy Felix

Let's just say that all three were deserving of the Cy Young Award and let it go at that.  But as an adedum, we could say that if King Felix pitched for the Yankees or Boston or Tampa or Texas -- any team with even a modicum of hitting -- he would easily have been a 20-game winner.  Not so sure the same can be said if C C were hurling for Seattle.

Since: Dec 2, 2007
Posted on: November 20, 2010 10:56 am

Love Letters: Felix takes bite out of AL East

Felix vs AL East this year:

Bal  Won   9 IP, 1 ER
NYY Won  9 IP, I ER
Bal  Lost   7 IP, I ER
NYY Won   9 IP, 0 ER (shutout)
NYY Won   8 IP, 0 ER
BOS Won  7 IP, 1 ER
TOR  Lost  8 IP, 1 ER

So for you East Coasters out there-- that's:

5-2 versus the AL East
57 innings pitched, 5 earned runs

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