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Entries in R.A. Dickey (8)


R.A. Dickey wins the NL CYA 

R.A. Dickey handily won the National League Cy Young Award in a victory that is great for him personally, really good for baseball, and provides a tip of the hat to the sportswriters who voted for him.

Dickey is one of the really good guys in the sport who has overcome a lot personally and professionally and had arguably the greatest season of any pure knuckleballer (Dickey said, he had spoken to or gotten text messages from knuckleheads Phil NiekroTim Wakefield and Charlie Hough. “This is a victory for all of us,” Dickey said.)

I can't help but be struck by the vast difference between Dickey and AL CYA winner David Price. While they are both from Tennessee and both are represented by Bo McKinnis,  Price averaged 91.2 m.p.h. per pitch while Dickey's pitches averaged 77.8. Price's fastest fastball was 99.6 m.p.h. while Dickey's was 86.1, two mph slower than Price's changeup.

In trying to find a visual example to display the differences between Price and Dickey, I opted to show pitches that batters swung and missed.

Here's Price's swings and misses

Batters swung at 1467 pitches and missed 309You can see the variance and the typical successful diagonal.

Here's Dickey's swings and misses

Batters swung at 1693 pitches and missed 443You can see batters  thinking about the knuckball mantra: If it's low, let it go, if it's high, let it fly."

As for the voters, on a conference call, Dickey credited voters for respecting the manner in which he dominated by saying,

“They didn’t see the knuckleball as a trick pitch; they didn’t see it as some kind of illegitimate weapon that isn’t worthy,” Dickey said. “They saw it as a legitimate weapon that has one purpose, and that’s to get big-league hitters out consistently. And they respected that. They had the imagination to see beyond some of, maybe, the old-school mentalities of what the knuckleball used to look like.”

While there are many stats that might reflect Dickey's history, I find the most telling to be his transaction history:

Congratulations to R.A. Dickey.



R.A. Dickey, 20-game winner

Yesterday afternoon, R.A. Dickey (20-6) became the first 20-game winner on a sub-.500 team since Roger Clemens did it with the Toronto Blue Jays in 1997. Topping the Pittsburgh Pirates, Dickey became the first 20-game winning knuckleballer since Houston’s Joe Niekro in 1980.

Dickey is different from any other knuckle ball pitcher because he throws his at a very fast 78 mph, and yesterday he tied his career high with 13 strikeouts. The 37-year-old never had won more than 11 games in any previous season.

Dickey has thrown 3265 pitches with the fastest reaching 86.1 mph and the slowest, 43.6 mphDickey joined a small group of Mets to reach the 20-win milestone.

NY Mets 20-game winners

1 Tom Seaver 25 1969 7 .781
2 Dwight Gooden 24 1985 4 .857
3 Tom Seaver 22 1975 9 .710
4 Jerry Koosman 21 1976 10 .677
5 Tom Seaver 21 1972 12 .636
6 R.A. Dickey 20 2012 6 .769
7 Frank Viola 20 1990 12 .625
8 David Cone 20 1988 3 .870
9 Tom Seaver 20 1971 10 .667
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Play Index Tool Used Generated 9/28/2012.

Here are some stats to see how Dickey fits in the NL Cy Young race.

NL Wins

W-L pct.

1 Kyle Lohse .842 16 3
2 R.A. Dickey .769 20 6
3 Mat Latos .765 13 4
4 Matt Cain .762 16 5
5 Tim Hudson .727 16 6
6 Cole Hamels .727 16 6
7 Gio Gonzalez .724 21 8
8 Stephen Strasburg .714 15 6
9 Lance Lynn .708 17 7
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/28/2012.


1 R.A. Dickey 222
2 Clayton Kershaw 211
3 Cole Hamels 208
4 Gio Gonzalez 207
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/28/2012.


1 Clayton Kershaw 2.68
2 R.A. Dickey 2.69
3 Matt Cain 2.77
4 Kyle Lohse 2.77
5 Johnny Cueto 2.83
6 Gio Gonzalez 2.89
7 Jordan Zimmermann 2.90
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/28/2012.


1 Johnny Cueto 5.7
2 Clayton Kershaw 5.4
3 R.A. Dickey 5.3
4 Gio Gonzalez 4.6
5 Jordan Zimmermann 4.4
6 Cole Hamels 4.1
7 Cliff Lee 4.0
8 Kyle Lohse 4.0
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/28/2012.


1 Clayton Kershaw 1.039
2 Matt Cain 1.040
3 R.A. Dickey 1.050
4 Kyle Lohse 1.078
5 Madison Bumgarner 1.106
6 Gio Gonzalez 1.129
7 Cliff Lee 1.131
8 Cole Hamels 1.133
Provided by Baseball-Reference.comView Play Index Tool Used
Generated 9/28/2012.
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