Best Of 2001

Best Rookie: C.C. Sabathia

In early April, a 6-foot-7, 250-pound figure strode to the middle of the Jacobs Field diamond, climbed the mound, and proceeded to hurl 98-mph baseballs past guys like Cal Ripken Jr. At the time, he wasn't old enough to get into a bar. C.C. Sabathia had become, at just 20 years old, one of the big leagues' dominators. Now 21, Sabathia has harnessed his mighty arm, diversified his pitches, and settled in for a stretch run at a pennant. At a time when some longtime Indians are thinking retirement, we're glad to welcome a fresh talent like Sabathia, whom we hope to see on the Jake mound another 20 years.

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