CLEVELAND -- Corey Kluber has rewritten several sections of the Indians' record book with his pitching prowess over the past few seasons. His latest campaign led to his second career American League Cy Young Award -- something no player had achieved before in Cleveland's long, storied history.For his work, Kluber
CLEVELAND -- Corey Kluber has rewritten several sections of the Indians' record book with his pitching prowess over the past few seasons. His latest campaign led to his second career American League Cy Young Award -- something no player had achieved before in Cleveland's long, storied history.
For his work, Kluber has been named the recipient of the 2017 Bob Feller Man of the Year Award as voted by the Cleveland chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, honoring the pitcher as the Indians' top player for this past season. Kluber, who also won the award in '14, became the first starting pitcher since Gaylord Perry (1972, '74) to take home the honor twice.
"The No. 1 responsibility of a starting pitcher is to be reliable," Kluber said after winning the AL Cy Young Award last month. "But then also, not just taking the ball, but taking the ball and going out there and giving the team a chance to win. Aside from any statistics, I think that, to me, is what I try to judge things on."
Kluber was the unanimous choice for the Man of the Year, though third baseman Jose Ramirez and shortstop Francisco Lindor were also nominated for the annual award, which dates back to 1946. Ramirez, who finished third in balloting for the AL MVP Award and won an AL Silver Slugger Award, was the Man of the Year winner in '16. Lindor was fifth in voting for the AL MVP Award and also won a Silver Slugger Award this year.
The Cleveland chapter also voted pitcher Josh Tomlin the winner of the 2017 Frank Gibbons-Steve Olin Good Guy Award, which is given to a person in the organization who understands the media's role and is helpful. Tomlin -- the longest-tenured player in the organization -- is regularly accessible, accountable and thoughtful in his interactions with reporters. Former Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway (named the Mets' manager earlier this offseason) and reliever Andrew Miller also received votes.
In 29 starts in '17, Kluber went 18-4 with an MLB-low 2.25 ERA, making the right-hander the first Indians pitcher to pace baseball in ERA since 1949 (Mike Garcia). Kluber struck out 265 batters and walked 36 in 203 2/3 innings, giving him four consecutive seasons with at least 200 strikeouts and 200 innings. After returning on June 1 from a month-long bout with a back injury, Kluber went 15-2 with a 1.62 ERA over his final 23 outings.
Kluber's strong showing and furious finish helped the Indians capture their second straight AL Central championship and post the second-highest win total (102) in franchise history. The pitcher went 4-0 with a 1.41 ERA within Cleveland's AL-record 22-game winning streak that stretched from Aug. 24-Sept. 14. For win No. 20, which tied the previous AL record set by the 2002 A's, Kluber spun a shutout against the Tigers on Sept. 12.
Kluber was named to the AL All-Star team and earned the AL Pitcher of the Month Award for June, August and September. The pitcher was honored as the AL's Outstanding Pitcher in the Players Choice Awards and was voted baseball's Best Pitcher as part of the Esurance MLB Awards. Kluber garnered 28 of 30 first-place votes for the AL Cy Young Award and finished seventh overall in balloting for the AL MVP.
Dating back to 2014, when Kluber won his first Cy Young Award, he has gone 63-38 with a 2.83 ERA and 1,006 strikeouts against 189 walks in 876 1/3 innings. The right-hander's 15 complete games in that span are more than 22 teams have as a whole during the same time period.
Cliff Lee (2008), Carsten Sabathia ('07) and Perry (1972) are the only other AL Cy Young Award winners in club history.
"It's exciting. It's a huge honor to win," Kluber said of his second career Cy Young victory. "It was an honor the first time and it's an honor the second time. I guess that more than anything, I think for me, this kind of shows what other people in the organization have been able to do on my behalf."
Jordan Bastian has covered the Indians for MLB.com since 2011, and previously covered the Blue Jays from 2006-10. Read his blog, Major League Bastian, follow him on Twitter @MLBastian and Facebook.