Hendriks, Williams named Relievers of the Year

Field Level Media

October 24, 2020 at 4:33 pm.

Oakland’s Liam Hendriks and Milwaukee’s Devin Williams were named the 2020 Relievers of the Year on Saturday.

Awarded annually since 2014, the winners were selected by a panel of seven former relief pitchers.

Hendriks received the Mariano Rivera American League Reliever of the Year award after going 3-1 with 14 saves and a 1.78 ERA in 24 games for the Athletics. The 31-year-old right-hander allowed just 14 hits in 25 1/3 innings and struck out 37 while walking only three batters.

“Honored is an understatement,” Hendriks said. “It’s humbling to win an award that bears the name of the greatest closer in history. I’m extremely thankful to my teammates. If they weren’t behind me on the field, I wouldn’t be half the pitcher I am today.”

Williams, a 26-year-old rookie right-hander, earned the Trevor Hoffman National League Reliever of the Year award after posting a 4-1 record and a 0.33 ERA in 22 appearances with the Brewers. He struck out 53 batters and allowed only eight hits in 27 innings.

Williams is the first rookie and the first pitcher without recording a save to win the award in either league. Teammate Josh Hader won the award in 2018 and 2019.

“I am very excited to earn NL Reliever of the Year and have this prestigious award remain with the Brewers for a third straight season,” Williams said. “I want to thank the organization — particularly my manager, coaches and teammates — for all of the support. I also thank the great Brewers fans, who were watching and cheering us on from home during this unique season.”

In addition to award namesakes Rivera and Hoffman, the voting panel included fellow Hall of Famers Dennis Eckersley, Rollie Fingers and Lee Smith as well as John Franco and Billy Wagner.