According to those who faced them all summer, two pitchers with Middle Tennessee ties were the best in the business.
David Price and R.A. Dickey were named Outstanding Pitcher in their respective leagues Monday when the Major League Players Association announced its Players Choice Awards.
Players from each league nominated and voted on the awards, which were revealed on MLB Network.
Price, a Murfreesboro native and Vanderbilt product, was named the American League’s Outstanding Pitcher. The hard-throwing left-hander finished 20-5 with a 2.56 ERA and 205 strikeouts.
“To gain the respect of those guys and get their vote, that's very special to me and very special to the Rays and it's something that I cherish,” Price said, according to MLB.com.
Dickey, a Nashville native and University of Tennessee product, also won 20 games (he was 20-6) with a 2.73 ERA and 230 strikeouts. The right-handed knuckleballer was the N.L. leader in innings, strikeouts, shutouts and complete games.
"It's really the ultimate show of respect, to have people that you played with and against acknowledge what you do," Dickey said. "It's really touching."
Price and Dickey are considered front-runners for the American and National League Cy Young Awards, which will be announced Nov. 14. Monday’s award presentation guarantees nothing in that regard but speaks well to their chances.
The Cy Young Award is presented annually to the best pitchers, one in each league, in Major League Baseball. Winners are determined by a vote of 32 members of the Baseball Writers Association of America.