NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- R.A. Dickey has become the center of attention at this week's Winter Meetings, negotiating a contract extension while the Mets weigh the merits of trading him. So perhaps it comes as little surprise that Dickey also managed to make a splash in Major League Baseball's Greatness In Baseball Yearly Awards.
Dickey won GIBBYs for Starting Pitcher of the Year and Breakout Pitcher of the Year, MLB announced Tuesday at the Opryland Hotel. Already the National League Cy Young Award winner and the MLB Players Association's Pitcher of the Year, Dickey now has even more hardware to call his own.
"It's one of the great stories in baseball," manager Terry Collins said. "I've got grandkids. To be able to put them on your knee and tell them, 'Look, if you can persevere, anything can happen.' ... He's a perfect example of it. To be able to sit there and live it and watch it on a daily basis, it's a great story."
Major League Baseball's A-listers won 2012 GIBBYs trophies -- the ultimate honors of baseball's awards season -- based on votes by media, front-office personnel, MLB alumni, fans at MLB.com and the Society for American Baseball Research.
This year's GIBBY Awards featured nominees in 21 categories. Individual honors went to the MLB MVP, in addition to the year's best hitter, closer, setup man, rookie, breakout hitter, comeback player, defensive player, manager, executive and postseason performer.
GIBBY trophies were also awarded for the year's top play, storyline, hitting performance, pitching performance, oddity, walk-off, Cut4 topic and postseason moment, from MLB.com's Must C highlight reels.
To win Starting Pitcher of the Year, Dickey beat out a 14-man field that included Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers, Justin Verlander of the Tigers and the American League Cy Young Award winner, David Price of the Rays. He also beat out a six-man field for Breakout Pitcher that included Aroldis Chapman of the Reds, Chris Sale of the White Sox and Kris Medlen of the Braves.
No pitcher in baseball was more consistent on the mound this season than Dickey, who threw consecutive one-hitters in June and finished 20-6 with a 2.73 ERA, becoming the Mets' first 20-game winner in nearly a quarter-century. The knuckleballer led the NL in innings, strikeouts, shutouts and complete games, and ranked second in wins and ERA.
"He's a guy who cares," Collins said. "He cares about the team. He cares about his job, his role, what he can do to help. It's about, 'Hey, what can I do today?' That's why I think he's a special guy."
Awards season is now over for Dickey, who believes he brought new legitimacy to his signature pitch by becoming the first knuckleballer to win the Cy Young. Whether he returns to the Mets may still be unclear. And whether or not his success inspires a new generation of pitchers to adopt the knuckleball remains to be seen.
But either way, Dickey has proven his own worth -- and has plenty of hardware to show for it.