NEW YORK -- C.C. Sabathia won the AL Cy Young Award on Tuesday, beating out several worthy contenders by a comfortable margin and becoming the first Cleveland pitcher in 35 years to earn the honor.
The Indians ace received 19 of 28 first-place votes and finished with 119 points in balloting by the Baseball Writers' Association of America. Boston's Josh Beckett was second with eight first-place votes and 86 points, while John Lackey of the Los Angeles Angels got the other first-place vote and came in third. Cleveland's Fausto Carmona was fourth.
"I was excited. My family and everybody were around," Sabathia said on a conference call from his home in California. "I was surprised. Beckett had a great year and an even better postseason."
Sabathia went 19-7 with a 3.21 ERA and 209 strikeouts, pitching a major league-high 241 innings. Beckett (20-7) became the only big league pitcher to win 20 games since 2005, compiling a 3.27 ERA in 200 2-3 innings. Lackey led the AL in ERA at 3.01, going 19-9 and tossing 224 innings. Carmona was 19-8 with a 3.06 ERA.
Digital Access for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
Voting took place before the postseason, when Sabathia struggled while Beckett pitched the Red Sox to a World Series championship with a string of dominant outings.
Sabathia is the first black pitcher to win a Cy Young Award since Dwight Gooden of the New York Mets in 1985.
• Outfielder Craig Monroe was acquired by the Minnesota Twins from the Chicago Cubs for a player to be named later.
The 30-year-old hit .219 with 12 homers and 59 RBIs this year from the Tigers and the Cubs, who obtained him Aug. 23 after Detroit designated him for assignment.
• Mariano Rivera was offered a $45 million, three-year contract to stay with the New York Yankees. Now, the team is waiting to hear back from its star closer.
"He'd be by $4 million a year the highest-paid relief pitcher," Yankees senior vice president Hank Steinbrenner said Tuesday. "To say that's a strong offer would be an understatement."
On Monday, the Yankees retained catcher Jorge Posada when they upped their offer to $52.4 million for four years. Posada is due to take a physical Wednesday, another step toward finalizing that agreement.
• COLLEGE FOOTBALL -- Following his record performance in leading The Citadel to a 42-31 upset over No. 19 Elon, Rock Hill native Bart Blanchard was named the Southern Conference's Freshman of the Week.
Blanchard went 22-for-29 for 370 yards and three touchdowns, the third-most passing yards a Bulldogs quarterback has ever recorded. The victory was the first win over a ranked opponent since the Bulldogs topped No. 18 Western Carolina in 2005.
Blanchard will lead the Cadets in just his third career start Saturday, when The Citadel travels to VMI in "The Military Classic of the South." Kickoff is set for noon at Alumni Memorial Field in Lexington, Va., with the game televised on CSTV.
• PRO FOOTBALL -- Suspended NFL player Adam "Pacman" Jones is expected to take a plea deal that will get him probation in return for testimony about a Las Vegas strip club triple shooting, his lawyer said.
The Tennessee Titans cornerback intends to plead no contest to one charge of conspiracy to commit disorderly conduct, a gross misdemeanor, in return for a promise to suspend a sentence of one year in county jail, according to a written plea agreement obtained by The Associated Press.