- Obama’s regulatory agenda will cost U.S. economy $143B next year: report
- Patriot Act author on James Clapper: Fire, prosecute him
- Russia P.M. Medvedev: No amnesty for political prisoners
- Michigan GOP Senate hopeful reminds government is the ‘servant’
- Christmas, by Congress: Members mull a 15-cent tax on trees
- U.S. unemployment falls to five-year low of 7 percent; 203K jobs added
- World mourns Nelson Mandela and celebrates his life; burial set for Dec. 15
- Bill O’Reilly reminds: Nelson Mandela ‘was a communist’
- John Boehner says GOP should support gay candidates: ‘I do’
- Grass-Whopper: Pan-fried cricket burgers go over big in New York City
Kimbrel, Hellickson chosen rookies of the year
Question of the Day
NEW YORK (AP) - Craig Kimbrel overpowered hitters with his rocket right arm, then overwhelmed rivals in the NL Rookie of the Year voting.
If only, the Atlanta Braves‘ closer figured, his final outing could’ve gone better.
Kimbrel set a major league record for saves by a rookie with 46. He earned all 32 first-place votes in balloting by the Baseball Writers' Association of America and outpointed Braves teammate Freddie Freeman.
“It definitely did surprise me,” Kimbrel said on a conference call from his vacation in Hawaii. “I expected it to be close.”
Kimbrel was dominant for much of the year, chosen as an NL All-Star during his streak of 38 straight appearances without allowing a run. But that streak ended in mid-September and the 23-year-old Kimbrel struggled as the Braves frittered away a 10 1/2-game lead in the NL wild-card race.
Kimbrel’s eighth blown save of the year came in the final game of the season, when he walked three, gave up a hit and allowed the tying run in the ninth inning against Philadelphia. The Phillies went on to win in the 13th, costing the Braves a spot in a one-game playoff against St. Louis for the wild-card slot.
“I blew many saves throughout the year. It just so happened that one came in the last game of the year with everything on the line,” he said. “My control was not there, I was all over the place.”
“I’m going to get over it, but I’m not going to forget it,” he said. “I need to fix it.”
Kimbrel struck out 127 in only 77 innings and anchored Atlanta’s outstanding bullpen, pitching 79 games. He was 4-3 with a 2.10 ERA, and his long scoreless span covered 37 2-3 innings.
“I did learn that the season is long,” he said.
Kimbrel wound up tied for Milwaukee’s John Axford for the NL lead in saves. He became the 10th unanimous NL rookie winner, and first since Albert Pujols in 2001. Kimbrel was the seventh Braves player to win the award that began in 1947, and first since Rafael Furcal in 2000.
Kimbrel, who pitched 21 games in 2010 but still retained his rookie eligibility, earned 160 points in the BBWAA balloting. Freeman, who hit .282 with 21 home runs and 76 RBIs, was second with 21 second-place votes and 70 points. Kimbrel and Freeman became the first pair of teammates to finish 1-2 in the NL rookie voting since Cubs outfielders Jerome Walton and Dwight Smith in 1989.
Philadelphia pitcher Vance Worley was third and Washington catcher Wilson Ramos was fourth. Ramos was kidnapped in Venezuela last week and freed Saturday when commandos raided the mountain hideout where he was being held.
“It’s something I really wanted to win,” Hellickson said on a conference call from his home in Iowa. He said there were “three or four guys” equally deserving of the award.
The 24-year-old Hellickson was a big reason the Rays were able to erase a nine-game deficit against Boston in the last 3 1/2 weeks to win the AL wild-card spot. He was unbeaten in five starts against AL East teams in the final month, and finished 7-3 in games against division rivals.
On the next-to-last day, he kept the Rays close against the visiting New York Yankees. On his final pitch of the regular season, Hellickson got Russell Martin to ground into a triple play with the bases loaded, and the Rays went on to win.
Hellickson is generously listed at 6-foot-1, but held up extremely well over 29 starts. He led all big league rookies in ERA, innings (189) and opponents’ batting average (.210).
“I’ve believed in myself and had all the confidence in the world in myself,” he said.
Like Kimbrel, Hellickson’s final outing was rocky. Against Texas in Game 4 in the opening round of the AL playoffs, he gave up a leadoff home run to Ian Kinsler and two homers to Adrian Beltre and left after four innings as the Rangers clinched the series.
Trumbo drew five first-place votes and 63 points. Eric Hosmer, who hit .293 with 19 home runs and 78 RBIs after being called up by Kansas City in May, got four first-place votes and 38 points. Ivan Nova, 16-4 with a 3.70 ERA for the Yankees, got one first-place vote and was fourth with 30. Seattle second baseman Dustin Ackley drew the other first-place vote.
The AL Cy Young Award will be announced Tuesday. Detroit ace Justin Verlander is expected to easily win.
“He’s the best pitcher in the game,” Hellickson said.
- Spike in battlefield deaths linked to restrictive rules of engagement
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality
- Activists urge Obama to go rogue, sidestep Congress
- Colorado judge: Bakery owner discriminated against gay couple
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- Obamas call to close Vatican embassy is 'slap in the face' to Roman Catholics
- PRUDEN: British press horrified as London's new mayor dares to proclaim the truth
- Hola: Boehner prepares to push amnesty bill through House
- KUHNER: Who betrayed Navy SEAL Team 6?
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
The Constitution: Every issue, every time. No exceptions, no excuses. And how to get from here to there.
Why can’t humans just be free to be humans?
Get in the middle of all the action inside and outside the boxing ring.
Find the latest news and happening that effect those in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland Metro region.
White House pets gone wild!