The Indians had CC Sabathia, who won the 2007 American League Cy Young Award.
They have Cliff Lee, just announced as the winner of the 2008 AL Cy Young.
They almost had Tim Lincecum, who earlier this week won the 2008 National League Cy Young.
When Lincecum was a draft-eligible sophomore at the University of Washington in 2005, the Indians gambled on him with a 42nd-round pick. Lincecum didn't sign, but one Indians official said this week that the final gap in the negotiations came down to just $300,000. Lincecum went back to school, and it worked out for him. The Giants took him 10th overall, and gave him a $2.025 million bonus.
Not even a year later, Lincecum was in the big leagues. Two years later, he was a Cy Young winner.
Lee's path to the Cy Young wasn't nearly as smooth. Acquired by the Indians from Montreal in the 2002 Bartolo Colon trade, he became an 18-game winner in 2005. Lee then became a minor leaguer in 2007, after going 5-8 with a 6.38 ERA in his first 16 starts.
He had to compete for a job in spring training 2008, but by the end of April he was 5-0 with an 0.96 ERA, and he was well on the way to the Cy Young.
So now it's two straight Cy Youngs for the Indians, who before 2007 had won just one of them in their history (Gaylord Perry, 1972).
"Hopefully (Fausto) Carmona wins next year, and we can keep it in the Tribe," Lee said today.