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Sale, Benintendi up for BBWAA Awards

Lefty ace recorded 308 K's while left fielder notched 20 HRs and 20 steals
MLB.com @IanMBrowne

BOSTON -- Lefty ace Chris Sale and left fielder Andrew Benintendi, who helped propel the Red Sox to a second consecutive American League East title, are in the running for prestigious trophies.

Sale is one of three finalists for the American League Cy Young Award. His competition is Indians right-hander Corey Kluber and Yankees righty Luis Severino.

BOSTON -- Lefty ace Chris Sale and left fielder Andrew Benintendi, who helped propel the Red Sox to a second consecutive American League East title, are in the running for prestigious trophies.

Sale is one of three finalists for the American League Cy Young Award. His competition is Indians right-hander Corey Kluber and Yankees righty Luis Severino.

Benintendi is a finalist the AL Rookie of the Year Award. Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge and Orioles outfielder/first baseman Trey Mancini are the other finalists.

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The finalists for each BBWAA Award were revealed on MLB Network on Monday night.

In Sale's first season with the Red Sox, his 308 strikeouts were just five shy of Hall of Famer Pedro Martinez (1999) for the club's all-time record. Sale went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA while holding opponents to a .208 average and notching a 0.97 WHIP.

If Sale can beat out Kluber and Severino, he would give the Red Sox back-to-back Cy Young Awards for the first time since Martinez captured the award from 1999-2000. Rick Porcello won it in '16.

The Red Sox made a blockbuster trade at last year's Winter Meetings, sending top prospects Yoan Moncada and Michael Kopech as part of the package to bring in Sale, one of the most dominant pitchers in the game. Sale and NL Cy Young Award finalist Max Scherzer are the only pitchers with 200-plus strikeouts in each of the past five seasons.

In 10 of Sale's 32 starts, he did not allow a run, joining Babe Ruth and Martinez as the only pitchers in Red Sox history to have that many scoreless outings in a season.

Video: Benintendi is an AL Rookie of the Year finalist

The 23-year-old Benintendi turned into an offensive force for the Red Sox just two years after he was taken seventh overall in the 2015 Draft. The left-handed hitter regularly batted second and third for the Sox, slashing .271/.352/.424 with 20 homers and 90 RBIs. He also stole 20 bases and made great strides in left field.

Benintendi joined Ellis Burks (1987) and Nomar Garciaparra ('97) as the only rookies in Red Sox history to have 20 homers and 20 steals and the first rookie to do so for any team since superstar Mike Trout did with the Angels in '12.

The Cy Young Awards in both leagues will be announced on Nov. 15 during an MLB Network special that starts at 6 p.m. ET. Both Rookie of the Year Awards will be announced on Nov. 13 at 6 p.m. ET.

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.

Boston Red Sox, Andrew Benintendi, Chris Sale