The A's, who've had as many ROY winners as anyone over the last 15 years, have produced yet another bright youngster who won the honor on Monday, edging out Texas' Elvis Andrus and Detroits' Rick Porcello for the award.
This has to be especially rewarding for Bailey, because unlike the other top candidates, he wasn't hyped up coming into the year and barely made the squad as a middle reliever. The injury to closer Joey Devine opened the door for the 25 year-old, and he eventually pitched his way into closing role. It wasn't until June when the rookie became the A's full-time closer and once he got the job, he really started to thrive. Bailey finished the year with 26 saves in 30 chances, to go with a 1.84 era and a 0.88 WHIP. He also struck out 91 batters in 83.1 innings pitched while allowing just 5 big flies on the year (1 for every 17 innings thrown). Bailey really emerged in '09 as one the leagues premier relief arms and will give the A's a pair of legit, flame throwing late relievers, with the returning Joey Devine in 2010. Bailey's emergence may even allow Billy Beane to move Devine for some positional help, but I think the A's will want to keep that bully intact.
Over in the National League, the Marlins' Chris Coghlan, who hit .321 with 84 runs scored and 9 home runs took home the NL ROY award. On Tuesday, Zack Grienke won the AL Cy Young Award in a landslide, as the Kansas City ace went 16-8 with a 2.16 era. (a MLB low for starting pitchers) Stay tuned as the NL Cy Young award winner will be announced on Wednesday and we'll see if Tim Lincecum can reel it in for the second consecutive year. My money's on him! We'll have the complete MLB Award re-caps once all of them have been announced, so there will me more on this to come!