On the second to last night of the 2012 MLB season for the New York Mets, ace R.A. Dickey fell victim to the long ball against the Miami Marlins and failed to win his 21st game of the year. Regardless of not recording the win though, Dickey’s stats are clearly formidable when compared to others in the race for the NL CY Young award. The Mets erased the loss from Dickey’s line with an offensive showing in the eighth combined with a meltdown from Marlins pitcher Heath Bell.
Let me just throw out this statistic that I obtained from ESPN Stats and Information:
R.A. Dickey can join Wilbur Wood (1971 White Sox) as the only pitchers who throw the knuckleball as a primary pitch to finish a season with 20 wins, 200 strikeouts, and an ERA below 3.00. Dazzy Vance and Luis Tiant, also threw the knuckleball and had seasons of this nature, but it was not their primary pitch. Wilbur Wood CHW, 1971: 22-13, 1.91, 210 K R.A. Dickey NYM, 2012: 20-6, 2.69, 222 K
Those stats of course do not reflect Dickey’s start tonight. His final line for 2012 reads: 20-6, 2.73ERA, 230SO, 1.05WHIP. Extremely incredible for a knuckleball pitcher. The only other two pitchers that in my mind even should have a chance to claim the CY Young are Washington Nationals pitcher Gio Gonzalez and Atlanta Braves closer Craig Kimbrel. Gonzalez’s line reads: 21-8, 2.89ERA, 207SO and 1.13WHIP. Kimbrel as a closer is even more interesting as he posted a 3-1 record to go with 42 saves, 1.02ERA, 113SO, 0.65WHIP, 14BB in 61.2IP. Kimbrel has also not allowed two hits in the same inning all year and only 7ER.
Maybe it’s the sentimental value of the road Dickey has traveled to get to these 20 wins. Possibly it is the fact that he plays on a team that is only 73-87 going into today’s game. But Dickey’s stats are solid as he has done things that almost no other knuckleballer has been able to do. This Mets team and its offense has been horrendous throughout the second half of this season, but every fifth day, you could count on the magic of Dickey to give the fans something to hope for.
The voters have not been sold solely on wins the past couple years, and Mets fans can only pray that something good will come of this year. Dickey should very well be the NL CY Young award winner and anyone that believes otherwise, clearly has not been paying much attention.
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