Well, OK, we're not calling for them to lose their voting privileges. It's not quite that egregious. Not George-King-in-1999 egregious. But it's still a little ridiculous that three voters decided either Josh Beckett or C.C. Sabathia just weren't good enough this year for a Cy Young vote.
Mark Feinsand of the New York Daily News and Jorge Ortiz of USA Today each listed Sabathia, Lackey (the AL ERA leader at 3.01), and the Indians' Fausto Carmona on their ballots, while Kevin Sherrington of the Dallas Morning News omitted Sabathia, listing Beckett, Carmona, and the Twins' Johan Santana.
Just as a reminder, here's a comparison of the five pitchers in question:
- Sabathia: 19-7, 3.21 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 241 IP, 209 K, 37 BB
- Beckett: 20-7, 3.27 ERA, 1.14 WHIP, 201 IP, 194 K, 40 BB
- Lackey: 19-9, 3.01 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 224 IP, 179 K, 52 BB
- Carmona: 19-8, 3.06 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 215 IP, 137 K, 61 BB
- Santana: 15-13, 3.33 ERA, 1.07 whip, 219 IP, 235 K, 52 BB [corrected]
In what universe was Santana better than Sabathia? Or Carmona better than Beckett?
I do think voters should lose their voting privileges if they're not willing to abide by the rules of the award (i.e. not voting for Japanese players for ROY despite the clear rule that they are eligible, or refusing to vote for pitchers for MVP, etc.). This is simply a judgment call. An inexplicably bad judgment call that raises the question of whether these men should be employed in their current positions, but one they're certainly entitled to make.