LOS ANGELES -- Four Dodgers, including ace starter Clayton Kershaw, are among the nominees for this year's Greatness in Baseball Yearly Awards. Major League Baseball's A-listers will take home 2012 GIBBYs -- the ultimate honors of the sport's awards season -- based on votes by media, front-office personnel, MLB alumni, fans at MLB.com and the Society for American Baseball Research. This year's GIBBY Awards feature nominees in 21 categories. Individual honors will go to the MVP, in addition to the year's best starting pitcher, hitter, closer, setup man, rookie, breakout hitter, breakout pitcher, comeback player, defensive player, manager, executive and postseason performer.
GIBBY trophies also will be awarded for the year's top play, storyline, hitting performance, pitching performance, oddity, walk-off, Cut4 topic and postseason moment, from MLB.com's Must C highlight reels. In the past four years, you the fans have cast more than 40 million votes across various GIBBYs categories, none of which are restricted to individual league affiliation. Fans can vote as many times as they want until balloting closes Sunday, Dec. 2, at 8:59 p.m. PT. Winners will be presented their GIBBYs at the MLB.com Greatness in Baseball Yearly Awards extravaganza during the Winter Meetings in Nashville, Tenn., on Tuesday, Dec. 4. Kershaw is nominated for Starting Pitcher of the Year. After winning the National League Cy Young Award last season, Kershaw topped the Majors this year with a 2.53 ERA and ranked among the NL leaders in strikeouts (229, second), opponents' batting average (.210, second), innings pitched (227 2/3, second), WHIP (1.02, first), pickoffs (11, first), quality starts (25, tied for second) and home runs allowed per nine innings (0.63, sixth). Kershaw is the first pitcher to lead the NL in ERA in consecutive seasons since Randy Johnson (2001-02) and the first Dodger since Sandy Koufax led the league in ERA in five consecutive seasons from 1962-66. The last pitcher to lead the Majors in consecutive seasons was Pedro Martinez (2002-03). He surpassed 200 strikeouts (229) for the third consecutive season and won 12 consecutive home decisions, tying Ed Roebuck and Orel Hershiser for the Los Angeles record. Ronald Belisario is nominated for Setup Man of the Year. After missing the entire 2011 season following a positive drug test, Belisario tied for the Major League lead with eight wins as a reliever (8-1) and ranked among the NL relief leaders in opponents' batting average (.187, fifth) and ground-ball percentage (80.0, third). Belisario posted a 1.53 ERA in 29 first-half appearances, the third-best mark among NL relievers. Adrian Gonzalez is nominated for Defensive Player of the Year. Gonzalez, who spent most of the season with Boston before his August trade to Los Angeles, ranked second among Major League first basemen with a .998 fielding percentage at the position, committing just three errors in 1,246 innings in 151 games (139 starts). Justin Sellers is nominated for Play of the Year. It came on May 14 in the ninth inning against Arizona and it was spectacularly painful. Turning and running diagonally full-speed from his third base position to chase a foul pop-up by Miguel Montero, Sellers caught the ball and hurtled over the railing and into the stands. Nine days later Sellers was disabled with a bulging disk in his lower back and on Aug. 23 he underwent season-ending surgery.
Ken Gurnick is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.