Justin Verlander wins 2022 AL Cy Young Award

Astros ace and now free agent wins his 3rd career Cy Young

Houston Astros starting pitcher Justin Verlander throws against the Philadelphia Phillies during the first inning in Game 5 of baseball's World Series between the Houston Astros and the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday, Nov. 3, 2022, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum) (Matt Slocum, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

HOUSTON – Astros All-Star right-handed pitcher Justin Verlander has been named the 2022 American League Cy Young Award winner, as announced by the Baseball Writers Association of America tonight on MLB Network.

Verlander won the award by receiving 30 first-place votes for 210 total points. Finishing in second place was White Sox right-handed Dylan Cease while Blue Jays right-handed pitcher Alek Manoah finished in third place.

This marks the third-career Cy Young Award for Verlander, who also earned the AL Cy Young in 2019 with Houston along with the AL Cy Young and AL MVP Awards in 2011 while with Detroit. It also marks his ninth top-five finish in the Cy Young voting, and his sixth time as a top-two finisher, as he was the AL Cy Young Award runner-up in 2012, 2016 and 2018. Verlander is the 11th pitcher in Major League history to win a Cy Young Award on three different occasions, and is the fourth Astros pitcher to win a Cy Young, joining right-handers Mike Scott (NL,1986) and Roger Clemens (NL, 2004), and left-hander Dallas Keuchel (AL, 2015). Verlander is the first pitcher is franchise history to win the Cy Young Award twice.

Verlander had a dominant season in 2022, leading the AL in wins (18), ERA (1.75), WHIP (0.83), opponent OPS (.497), opponent average (.186) , opponent slugging percentage (.297) and hits per nine innings (5.97). He finished the season with a 1.75 ERA, which is the lowest posted by an Astros pitcher in a full season in club history, besting Clemens, who worked to a 1.87 ERA in 2005. Additionally, Verlander’s ERA is the lowest posted by an AL pitcher in a full season since Red Sox starter Pedro Martinez had a 1.74 ERA in his Cy Young season of 2000. His ERA was also the third-lowest in the AL since divisional play began in 1969.

The 39-year-old was the ultimate stopper for the Astros this season. In his 12 starts following an Astros loss, he went 9-0 with a 1.11 ERA (9ER/73IP).

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 23: Justin Verlander #35 of the Houston Astros celebrates after defeating the New York Yankees in game four to win the American League Championship Series at Yankee Stadium on October 23, 2022 in the Bronx borough of New York City. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) (2022 Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TEXAS - NOVEMBER 05: Justin Verlander #35 of the Houston Astros and wife Kate Upton celebrate after defeating the Philadelphia Phillies 4-1 to win the 2022 World Series in Game Six of the 2022 World Series at Minute Maid Park on November 05, 2022 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) (2022 Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TEXAS - NOVEMBER 05: Justin Verlander #35 of the Houston Astros embraces his wife Kate Upton after defeating the Philadelphia Phillies 4-1 to win the 2022 World Series in Game Six of the 2022 World Series at Minute Maid Park on November 05, 2022 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) (2022 Getty Images)