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MLB Cy Young 2021: Blue Jays’ Robbie Ray takes home American League award

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Last offseason the Toronto Blue Jays rolled the dice on lefty Robbie Ray with a one-year, $8 million contract, and he rewarded them with a Cy Young season in 2021. Wednesday night the Baseball Writers Association of America announced Ray beat out Yankees ace Gerrit Cole and White Sox righty Lance Lynn for the American League Cy Young award.

Ray received 29 of the 30 first place votes. The other went to Cole.

Ray, 30, had a marvelous first full season with the Blue Jays, throwing a league best 193 1/3 innings while leading qualified pitchers in ERA (2.84), ERA+ (154), WHIP (1.05), and WAR (7.6). He is the first Toronto pitcher to win the award since the late Hall of Famer Roy Halladay in 2003, and the fifth Blue Jays pitcher overall, joining Halladay, Roger Clemens (1997, 1998), and Pat Hentgen (1996).

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Here’s how the three American League Cy Young finalists stack up:

Gerrit Cole, Yankees

16-8

181 1/3

3.23

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133

12.1

2.0

5.7

Lance Lynn, White Sox

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11-6

157

2.69

161

10.1

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2.6

5.4

Robbie Ray, Yankees

13-7

193 1/3

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2.84

154

11.5

2.4

7.6

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The Cy Young award comes at an excellent time for Ray, who is currently a free agent and poised to sign a lucrative long-term deal. Our R.J. Anderson ranked him the best free agent starter on the market and the sixth best free agent overall. No longer before the Cy Young announcement, Ray officially declined the one-year, $18.4 million qualifying offer.

Cole finished second to Ray in the voting, earning his fourth straight (and fifth overall) top five finish in the Cy Young voting. He was the favorite to win the award most of the season, though he stumbled a bit following MLB‘s foreign substance crackdown in June, then he limped to the finish following a hamstring injury in September. In many other years, Cole would have won the Cy Young.

Lynn was hampered a bit by a knee problem down the stretch — he fell five innings short of qualifying for the ERA title — but was consistently excellent all season. This is his highest ever finish in the Cy Young voting and his third straight finish in the top six. Lynn could have become a free agent this offseason like Ray, though he signed a two-year extension a few weeks ago.

Other American League hurlers to receive Cy Young votes this season include White Sox lefty Carlos Rodón and Red Sox righty Nathan Eovaldi. Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani is the favorite to be named AL MVP on Thursday. He did not receive any Cy Young votes, however. Full AL Cy Young voting results are available at the BBWAA’s site.

Ray is the seventh different pitcher to win the AL Cy Young in the last seven years, joining Shane Bieber (2020), Justin Verlander (2019), Blake Snell (2018), Corey Kluber (2017), Rick Porcello (2016), Dallas Keuchel (2015). The last repeat winner in the Junior Circuit was Clemens in 1997-98.

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Wiz Khalifa performs at the Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum

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Wiz Khalifa performed mid-race at the Busch Light Clash at the Coliseum and USC Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams lit the torch at The Coliseum. 



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Larry McReynolds explains safety changes NASCAR made in 2023 | NASCAR on FOX

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Larry McReynolds explains some of the safety changes NASCAR made for 2023 to reduce impacts with the retaining wall.



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Raptors close out season-long road trip with hard-fought win over Grizzlies

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Pascal Siakam scored 19 points, including a pair of free throws with 9 seconds left, and the Toronto Raptors rallied from a 15-point deficit to beat the Memphis Grizzlies 106-103 on Sunday.

Jaren Jackson Jr. missed a 3-pointer with 5.2 seconds left that would have tied the game for the Grizzlies, who played without star Ja Morant because of right wrist soreness.

Toronto won its second straight game and went 4-3 on its season-long seven-game road swing. Memphis has lost three straight and eight of nine.

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Chris Boucher scored 17 points and matched his season high with three 3-pointers for the Raptors. Scottie Barnes finished with 16 points, including a pair of key baskets down the stretch.

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Desmond Bane led Memphis with 26 points, while Jackson had 18 points and four blocks. In addition to Morant, the Grizzlies were missing center Steven Adams (right knee) and forward Dillon Brooks, who served a league-assessed one-game suspension for his confrontation with Cleveland’s Donovan Mitchell on Thursday.

The Grizzlies led 81-66 with 4:44 left in the third quarter and had an 86-78 advantage entering the fourth.

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Precious Achiuwa got free for a baseline dunk with 2:32 left that gave the Raptors a 100-99 lead. From there, the teams traded baskets until Barnes hit a pair of shots, the latter with 20.1 seconds left for a 104-103 advantage.

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TIP-INS

Raptors: F O.G. Anunoby, whose name has been mentioned in trade rumours, missed his fifth straight game with a left wrist sprain. … Fred VanVleet handed out his 2,000th career assist in the first quarter. … Scottie Barnes had his 100th career block in the third quarter. … Gary Trent Jr. had 10 points, ending his streak at 11 straight games with at least 15 points.

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Grizzlies: Santi Aldama finished with 15 points. … Tyus Jones recorded his 500th career steal in the first quarter. … The loss prevented Memphis from sweeping the series with Toronto. It hasn’t won both games against the Raptors in the regular season since 2012-13.

MORANT FRIEND PUNISHED

Morant tweeted that a friend of his has been banned from games at FedExForum for a year. The punishment stems from a confrontation on Jan. 29, when the Grizzlies hosted Indiana. During the game, there was barking between Pacers players and friends of Morant seated along the sideline. The talking apparently continued into the players’ parking area after the game, leading to an investigation by the league. Memphis coach Taylor Jenkins said he was aware of the league’s investigation and that the team addressed the matter internally. He did not elaborate further.

UP NEXT

Raptors: Host San Antonio on Wednesday night.

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Grizzlies: Host Chicago on Tuesday night.

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