It’s official! Gerrit Cole is the 2023 American League Cy Young Award winner. While he was the heavy favorite going into the announcement, earlier tonight, it was made official on MLB Network that the Yankees’ ace would take home some hardware. With 30 first-place votes, Cole was unanimously voted the best pitcher in the AL for this past season.
All aboard. This is a Cy Young bound express Cole Train. pic.twitter.com/ywdwuEEzfr— New York Yankees (@Yankees) November 15, 2023
With the win, Cole becomes the franchise’s first Cy Young winner since Roger Clemens in 2001, and the sixth in team history. Other than Clemens, Cole joins Bob Turley (1958), Whitey Ford (1961), Sparky Lyle (1977), and Ron Guidry (1978) as the other winners from Yankees’ history. The only unanimous pick outside of Cole was Guidry.
While this arguably wasn’t even the best season of his MLB career, Cole is very deserving of this accolade, as he was one of very few bright spots for the 2023 Yankees. He led the league in ERA (2.63), ERA+ (165), WHIP (0.981), innings pitched (209.0), and shutouts (2). among other stats. Even with the Yankees struggling to finish above .500, he more than held his own, going 15-4, as he allowed more than three earned runs in a game just five times out of 33 starts. Beyond that, he also put up a 3.16 FIP, 7.4 Baseball Reference WAR, and 5.2 FanGraphs WAR. He was a very large part of the Yankees managing to still somehow finish above .500 with all the struggles and injury issues they dealt with.
Gerrit Cole’s impressive 2023 campaign lands him his first ever Cy Young Award. pic.twitter.com/IzXssfGgpS— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) November 15, 2023
Both Gray and Gausman had good seasons, and helped their teams to playoffs berths, their cases just didn’t quite match up well enough. Cole obviously beat them out in a number of stats, and also had the narrative on his side on being arguably the best and most well known active pitcher who had yet to win a Cy Young.
This was the seventh time that Cole has finished in the top 10 in voting, having previously topped out at second place in both 2019 and 2021.
As for the voting breakdown, as mentioned, Cole was the unanimous winner getting all 30 first place votes. Gray came in second, receiving 20 of the 30 second-place votes, and Gausman in third. No other Yankee got consideration, as no other were ranked among anyone of the 30 voter’s top five.
Over in the National League, Blake Snell came out on top, getting 28 of 30 first place votes to win his second career Cy.
When the Yankees signed Cole in winter 2019, it was with the expectation that he would have seasons like this one. He’s has a couple really good ones, and now, he’s been rewarded for it with a massive accolade. Congrats, Gerrit!