Is Pete Vuckovich the worst Cy Young Award winner in history?  Recently, I posted an article about the 1987 NL Cy Young winner Steve Bedrosian, outlining his infamous selection.  However, Vuckovich might end up claiming the worst-ever prize, thanks to the Factor12 Rating.

The Milwaukee Brewers right-hander was voted the 1982 AL Cy Young Award by the BBWAA.  At first glance, this is an obvious case of selecting the pitcher with the most wins, and/or best win-loss record.

Pitchers

Tm

Pnts

W

L

SV

IP

ERA

WHIP

BB

SO

Pete Vuckovich MIL

87

18

6

0

223.67

3.34

1.50

102

105

Jim Palmer BAL

59

15

5

1

227.00

3.13

1.14

63

103

D.Quisenberry KCR

40

9

7

35

136.67

2.57

1.01

12

46

Dave Stieb TOR

36

17

14

0

288.33

3.25

1.20

75

141

Rick Sutcliffe CLE

14

14

8

1

216.00

2.96

1.26

98

142

Clearly, there was no obvious choice.  Vuckovich compiled an 18-6 record, while allowing a ridiculously high 1.50 WHIP, and only +3 S0-BB (105-102).  In hindsight, this is simply laughable and embarrassing for the BBWAA electorate.

Here’s the Factor12 Rating breakdown of the 1982 AL Cy Young vote:

Pitchers

AGE

F12

RANK

Pete Vuckovich

29

23.958

112

Jim Palmer

36

25.765

44

D.Quisenberry

29

25.808

41

Dave Stieb

24

26.809

18

Rick Sutcliffe

26

25.780

42

As shown below, Vuckovich finished below average (2.000) in 8 out of 12 pitching categories.  Most notably, the 1982 AL Cy Young winner finished 112 out of 376 pitchers during the season, with a below average 23.958 F12 Rating.

IP

SO-BB

FIP

WHIP

HR/9

BB/9

3.220

1.053

1.936

1.890

2.351

1.740

SO/9

MBOP

OBA

OOBA

OSLG

ERA

1.824

1.932

1.949

1.910

2.008

2.145

The highest ranked AL pitcher in 1982, according to F12 Rating, was Len Barker of the Cleveland Indians.  Barker posted a 27.349 F12, good for 12th overall.

Pete Vuckovich can thank tremendous run support from “Harvey’s Wall Bangers”, and an overvalued statistic (Wins) by baseball “experts”.