OKLAHOMA CITY, OCTOBER 20, 2011—Warren Spahn Award organizers announced today that Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers is the 2011 Spahn Award winner.
The Spahn Award is presented annually to the best left-handed pitcher in Major League Baseball and is based on a pitcher’s wins, strikeouts and earned run average. Kershaw led in all categories with 21 wins, 248 strikeouts and a 2.28 ERA.
“It is a genuine honor to have my named mentioned alongside one of the greatest lefties in the history of the game,” Kershaw said. “Mr. Spahn accomplished so much both in baseball and in his life off the field. I am truly humbled by this award. Thank you.”
Greg Spahn, son of the late Warren Spahn, said this is the first time an award winner has placed first in every category since Randy Johnson won in the late 1990s.
“Congratulations to Clayton Kershaw on an incredible season, leading all lefties with a 2.28 ERA,” Spahn said. “In fact, he led in each category of the Warren Spahn Award, with the Dodgers a third place club in the National League West. I look forward to handing him the award.”
Sponsored by Farmers Insurance Group, the Spahn Award is named after Oklahoman and National Baseball Hall of Famer Warren Spahn, who holds the MLB record of 363 wins as a left-handed pitcher.
“Warren Spahn was most well-known for his record number of wins, so it’s appropriate that this year’s Spahn Award winner is also the Dodgers’ first 20-game winner in over two decades,” said Bill Hickman, chairman of the Warren Spahn Award board. “Congratulations to Mr. Kershaw on an outstanding season and on winning this prestigious award.”
Kershaw’s 2011 accomplishments also include being selected as the Dodgers’ Opening Day Starter, being selected to the National League squad for the MLB All-Star Game and being awarded the NL Player of the Month and NL pitching Triple Crown. Originally from Dallas, Texas, Kershaw was drafted by the Dodgers in 2006 and made his major league debut in 2008 as the youngest player in the league.
In its 13th year, the Spahn Award will be presented at the Warren Spahn Award Gala, hosted by Oklahoma City’s Bricktown Rotary Club and Jim Thorpe Association in January at the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame & Jim Thorpe Museum.
Past Spahn Award winners include: David Price (2010); CC Sabathia (2007–2009); Johan Santana (2004, 2006); Dontrelle Willis (2005); Andy Pettitte (2003); and Randy Johnson (1999–2002). For more information, visit OKCSpahnAwards.com.