HOUSTON, TX - Astros Manager Dusty Baker and right-handed pitcher Luis Garcia were each named finalists for the 2021 BBWAA Awards. Baker is a finalist for American League Manager of the Year while Garcia Is a finalist for the American League Rookie of the Year Award.
Baker helped lead the Astros to the World Series this season, giving the club its third appearance in the Fall Classic in the past five seasons and its fourth in the Series in franchise history.
The veteran skipper is one of the most successful managers in Major League history, amassing 1,987 wins in his 24 seasons as a skipper, which ranks 12th all-time. In April, he passed Hall of Fame manager Casey Stengel with his 1,906th career win to move into 12th place.
Baker reached two additional milestones in 2021. When the Astros clinched the AL West title in September, he became the first manager in MLB history to win division titles with five different clubs. And, when the Astros advanced to the World Series in October, Baker became the ninth manager in history to win pennants in both the AL and NL.
He would become the third Astros manager to earn the BBWAA Manager of the Year Award, joining Hal Lanier (1986) and Larry Dierker (1998). This would also be the fourth time in his illustrious career for him to win the award (1993, 1997, 2000).
Garcia, who debuted on Sept. 4, 2020, went 11-8 with a 3.48 ERA in his 30 MLB appearances (28 starts). He led AL rookie pitchers in WAR (3.0), wins (11), innings (155.1) and strikeouts (167). The 24-year old righty also ranked 3rd in ERA (3.48), 3rd in opponent batting average (.232), and 4th in WHIP (1.18) among AL rookie pitchers (min. 100 IP). He was brilliant against right-handed hitters holding them to a .182 opponent batting average, which ranked fifth in the AL.
His strikeout totals were the second-highest by a rookie in Astros franchise history, trailing only RHP Tom Griffin (200) in 1969. Garcia became the eighth rookie pitcher in club history to post an 11-win season and the first since RHP Collin McHugh, who also won 11 games for the Astros in 2014.
He could become the fourth Astros player and the first pitcher to earn the Rookie of Year award, joining Jeff Bagwell (1991), Carlos Correa (2015) and Yordan Alvarez (2019).