Wins First Cy Young Award In 1995
In 1995 Johnson posted an 18-2 record with an ERA of 2.48, earning him his first Cy Young Award. Even more significantly, Johnson helped the Mariners make it to the playoffs where Seattle upset the New York Yankees in five games, largely on the strength of Johnson's brilliant relief performance in the fifth and deciding game. Sidelined by injury for most of 1996, Johnson bounced back in 1997 with a 20-4 record and an ERA of 2.28. After a mediocre start to his 1998 season with the Mariners, Johnson was traded by Seattle to the Houston Astros, where he posted an amazing record of 10-1 with an ERA of 1.28.
Despite Johnson's stunning success with the Astros, at season's end he became a free agent and signed to pitch for the Arizona Diamondbacks. It proved to be a marriage made in heaven. For the next four years, Johnson's incredible pitching earned him four consecutive Cy Young awards. His ERA for each of his first four years in Arizona never climbed higher than 2.64. In 2001 came what was for Johnson the brightest moment yet. Arizona made it into the playoffs, where Johnson compiled an astounding record of 5-1 with forty-seven strikeouts in forty-one innings. The Diamondbacks went on to win baseball's World Championship with a thrilling seventh-game victory over the New York Yankees in the World Series. Johnson and teammate Curt Schilling were named co-MVPs of the World Series.
When Johnson learned in early November 2002 that he'd earned his fourth consecutive Cy Young Award, he told the Associated Press: "I'm a very simple person. I work hard, and I push myself, and this is the reward…. If you remain consistent and have a good year, it's kind of a bonus. This has come from maintaining consistency, hard work, and dedication, and my teammates being very supportive offensively, defensively, and in the bullpen."
- Randy Johnson - Further Information
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