Sunday, May 06, 2007

Yankees win Clemens' sweepstakes

-Courtesy of the New York Yankees

The New York Yankees announced today that they have signed seven-time Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens to a minor-league contract.

The 44-year old Clemens made 19 starts with the Houston Astros in 2006, posting a 7-6 record with a 2.30 ERA and102 strikeouts (113.1IP, 89H, 34R, 29ER, 29BB). He signed a one-year contract with the Astros on May 31, 2006 after going 13-8 with a career-best 1.87 ERA in 32 starts with Houston in 2005. 2006 was the 10th consecutive season that Clemens has posted a winning record, and he has now done so in 21 of his 23 Major League seasons.

The 11-time All-Star owns a career record of 348-178 with a 3.10 ERA. His 348 wins rank eighth in Major League history, 13 behind Pud Galvi and Kid Nichols (361) for seventh place on Baseball’s all-time list. Clemens' .662 career winning percentage trails only Lefty Grove (.680) and Christy Mathewson (.665) among all-time pitchers with at least 300 wins, and his 21 seasons with a winning record while starting at least 15 games are the most in baseball history.

With 4,604 career strikeouts, Clemens is one of only four pitchers in Major League history to have reached the 4,000 strikeout milestone. He ranks second on baseball’s all-time list behind Nolan Ryan (5,714). Clemens ranks second among all-time Major League pitchers with 172 career strikeouts in the postseason, behind only Atlanta’s John Smoltz (194). He leads all active Major League pitchers in wins, strikeouts, games started (690), innings pitched (4817.2), complete games (118) and shutouts (46).

Originally acquired by the Yankees prior to the 1999 season from the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for Homer Bush, Graeme Lloyd and David Wells, Clemens was a member of two Yankees World Championship teams in 1999 and 2000. On June 13, 2003 at Yankee Stadium, he became only the 21st pitcher in Major League history to reach the 300-win milestone, while also recording his 4,000th career strikeout in a 5-2 victory vs. the Cardinals.

The winner of an unprecedented seven Cy Young Awards, Clemens was most recently honored as the National League’s best pitcher in 2004 with the Houston Astros. He also earned the Cy Young in the American League in 1986, 1987 and 1991 with the Boston Red Sox, 1997 and 1998 with Toronto, and 2001 with the Yankees. In 2004, he became the oldest pitcher in history to earn the Cy Young and is one of only four pitchers to win the Cy Young in both leagues (also Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez and Gaylord Perry). Clemens is the only pitcher to receive the honor with as many as four different teams.

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