Gio Gonzalez will not find out his Cy Young fate until after the postseason, but he can already clear some space on his mantel.
Gonzalez, the Nationals’ No. 1 starter in the postseason, won the Warren Spahn Award as the best left-handed pitcher in the majors based on ERA, wins and strikeouts. Gonzalez beat out David Price and Clayton Kershaw, among others, with a major league-best 21 wins, 207 strikeouts and a 2.89 ERA.
“I’m honored to be even be mentioned in the same breath as Warren Spahn and the past winners of this award,” Gonzalez said in a statement. “I am truly humbled by this recognition.”
The Warren Spahn Award is given by the Bricktown Rotary Club of Oklahoma City and Jim Thorpe Association. Spahn, who holds the all-time record with 363 wins as a lefty, was raised in Oklahoma.
In his first season with the Nationals, Gonzalez fulfilled the promise the Nationals saw when they shipped four prospects – including stater Tommy Milone and catcher Derek Norris, two key pieces to Oakland’s AL West title – to the A’s for him last December. He made the all-star team and, while R.A. Dickey seems to be the favorite, he is a top contender for the NL Cy Young award.
Gonzalez will start Game 1 of the Nationals’ NLDS on Sunday.