i was thinking about fernando valenzuela and don newcombe last fall as jose fernandez made his late season run. if you have forgotten, the marlins rookie was 8-2 with a 1.43 era over the last 3 months of the season, and had 103 strikeouts in 88 innings during that time. i was thinking about fernando because back in 1981, he became the first pitcher to win both the rookie of the year award and the cy young award in the same season, and i thought that fernandez had a shot at duplicating the feat. however, because clayton kershaw won the cy young over fernandez, valenzuela remains the only pitcher to win both awards in the same season. crisis averted. now, here are a couple of el toro's cards that i've had scanned for a while.
1987 topps glossy send in
and 2004 fleer greats of the game
back in dodger blue. it should be noted that fernando finished 5th in the league mvp voting in 1981 - the highest he would get in his career.
i mentioned up top that i was also thinking of don newcombe. like fernando, newcombe won the rookie of the year award. newk won his in 1949, but he didn't win the cy young award that year, mostly because the award didn't exist. here are some cards of newks' that i've been saving for a rainy day.
2004 upper deck sweet spot classics
and 2005 topps pristine (uncirculated)
now seems like a good time to show a couple other cards from that set - davey lopes
but i digress.
newcombe may well have won the cy young had it existed in 1949, but he did win it once it came into being. newcombe was the very first person to win the award when it was initiated in 1956. and that was when there was just one award for all of major league baseball. he also won the mvp award that same season, making him the first player in history to win the rookie of the year, cy young, and mvp awards. here's a 1961 topps card celebrating his mvp win that newk signed for me through the mail four years ago.