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Zac Gallen finishes fifth in Cy Young voting

Sandy Alcantara was a unanimous winner.

Arizona Diamondbacks v Milwaukee Brewers Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

If there was no doubt about the winner of the 2022 Cy Young award, things were considerably murkier thereafter. Seven different players received at least one second-place vote, six got a third-place vote, and the fourth-place ballots listed no fewer than nine pitchers. No other pitcher bar Alcantara was mentioned on more than 23 of the 30 ballots. Zac Gallen finished fourth, with three voters listing him in second place, including Jayson Stark of The Athletic, and was named between second and fifth on twenty ballots.

Fifth seems about right. Going by bWAR, Gallen ranked equal sixth, but the difference between fourth and seventh was only 0.3 wins, so within the bounds of reasonable argument. Aaron Nola perhaps deserved better than fourth, as his 6.0 bWAR was beaten only by Alcantara. On the other hand, Julio Urias didn't even crack five bWAR, eighth best in the league, but still finished third. Dodger bias? Perhaps not, as if that were the case, Tony Gonsolin's 16-1 record would surely have merited at least some votes.

The 45 points scored by Gallen, on the 7-4-3-2-1 system, is a sharp uptick from the 2 points he scored in 2020, when he was the last Diamondback pitcher to get any votes. Obviously, it's a category in which the team has done well over the years, thanks to Randy Johnson, Brandon Webb and Curt Schilling. But it has been tougher of late. Patrick Corbin was the last Arizona pitcher to make the top five, also finishing fifth in 2018, though with a much smaller points tally (23). Zack Greinke came fourth in 2017, on 52 points, as did Ian Kennedy (76 points) in 2011.