About that AL Cy Young race and the two Tampa Bay voters ...
The AL Cy Young race turned out to be close, which in turn made it controversial, with Boston's Rick Porcello finishing just five points ahead of Detroit's Justin Verlander.
Much is being made - most, um, colorfully by Verlander's fiancee Kate Upton in an NSFW Twitter storm - over the fact that the two voters from Tampa Bay BBWAA chapter left Verlander off their five-man ballot.
First, the voters in question are two veteran writers, Bill Chastain of mlb.com and Fred Goodall of the Associated Press, who put time, research and effort into casting their ballots, and voted for the five pitchers they thought were most deserving.
As chairman of the Tampa Bay chapter, I assigned Chastain and Goodall to have the Cy Young vote. I was confident then, as I am now, that they handled the assignment thoughtfully and responsibly. I was in communication with both tonight and both felt comfortable with their ballots, and somewhat surprised at the controversial reaction, which included everything from charges of incompetence to accusations of a payoff or vendetta.
The point is, they were qualified voters who had the right to vote however they thought most right.
Second, the fact that they left Verlander off their ballot wasn't the difference in the outcome of the vote. Both would have had to have Verlander third or better for him to win. And there were seven other writers (from Baltimore, Boston, LA, New York, Seattle, Texas) who had him fourth or fifth on their ballots.
The voting for each award is done by 30 members of the BBWAA, two representing each of the 15 cities in the league, and similarly for the NL awards.
The voting results, based on a 7-4-3-2-1 points system, were interesting. Porcello won with only eight of the 30 first-place votes, but on the strength of 18 second-place votes. Verlander got 14 first-place votes, but only two for second, five for third, four for fourth and three for fifth.
Here is a link to the complete voting results.