Seattle pitcher Randy Johnson was the overwhelming winner of the American League's Cy Young Award. Known more in his early days for his size and propensity to accidentally hit batters often and without warning, the 6'10" lefthander harnessed his control in recent seasons to become a much more effective pitcher. Johnson dominated the league, leading the majors in strikeouts for the fourth straight year on the way to an 18-2 record and a 2.48 earned run average. Perhaps no pitcher was more valuable to his team than the "Big Unit"; the Mariners were 27-3 in games he started, and Johnson led Seattle to the playoffs for the first time in team history. Monday, Atlanta's Greg Maddux on Monday won the award given to the National League's best pitcher for the fourth straight year. The ace of the Braves' pitching staff dominated the league this year, with an NL-high 19 wins and a 1.63 earned run average, and led the Braves to their first world championship since 1957. The diminutive Maddux, who TIME's Steve Wulf calls "the best pitcher of his generation," beat out several others including Hideo Nomo, the Los Angeles Dodgers Rookie of the Year.