Jake Arrieta Wins NL Cy Young Award

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The Cubs’ Jake Arrieta, whose 0.75 ERA after the All-Star break was the lowest in major league history, narrowly outpointed Dodgers righthander Zack Greinke to win the NL Cy Young Award Wednesday.

Greinke’s teammate Clayton Kershaw, the two-time defending Cy Young winner, finished third.

“I’m a little relieved,” Arrieta said on MLB Network. “I have to say thanks to all the great players I continue to compete against year in and year out. All the hard work is worth it. Thanks to Kris Bryant for winning the Rookie of the Year, and thanks and congratulations to our manager Joe Maddon (for winning Manager of the Year). To be a part of it with those guys is really incredibly special.”

Arrieta ranked as the No. 67 prospect in all of baseball after the 2008 season, but struggled mightily with the Orioles and was back in the minors at 27 years old in 2013. In July of that year, he was traded to the Cubs with Pedro Strop and two international bonus slots for Scott Feldman and Steve Clevenger. He started to turn it around in Chicago that summer and then went 10-5, 2.53 in 2014 before his historic season in 2015.

“It was a long time coming, a lot of adjusting, trying to figure this game out. The game is very difficult,” he said. “Everything I’ve been through makes it all special, the grinding, going down to Triple-A …”

Arrieta was the fifth Cubs pitcher honored. The others: Ferguson Jenkins, Bruce Sutter, Rick Sutcliffe and Greg Maddux.

Greinke and Kershaw were the eighth set of teammates to place second and third in the balloting.

1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th Points
Jake Arrieta, Cubs 17 11 2 169
Zack Greinke, Dodgers 10 17 3 147
Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers 3 2 23 1 1 101
Gerrit Cole, Pirates 2 13 8 40
Max Scherzer, Nationals 13 6 32
Madison Bumgarner, Giants 1 6 8
Jacob deGrom, Mets 2 3 7
Mark Melancon, Pirates 5 5
John Lackey, Cardinals 1 1