Two-time Cy Young Award-winner Gaylord Perry reflects on making history in both leagues
We had five Hall of Famers on that Giants team – Cepeda, Mays, McCovey, Marichal and myself. The pressure in Cleveland was to show that I could win anywhere.
It is safe to say that Perry showed that during his time in Cleveland. He went 24-16 in 1972, posting an ERA of 1.92 and tossing 29 complete games. Winning the Cy Young Award on top of all that was just the icing on the cake.
And he still remembers the day he won it.
“I was at my farm in North Carolina, when I got the phone call,” Perry said. “It was really rewarding, because when you get traded you think you’ve lost your value to the team that you love so much.”
In 1978, Perry was overcoming a different kind of challenge. Not only had he just been traded from the Texas Rangers to the San Diego Padres, but he was about to turn 40 and was starting to experience the wear and tear time exacts on an athlete.
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Alex Coffey is the communications specialist at the National Baseball Hall of Fame