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06/02/2011 5:15 PM ET
Jeremy Hellickson Of The Tampa Bay Rays Named American League Pitcher Of The Month For May
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Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Jeremy Hellickson has been voted the American League Pitcher of the Month for May.

Hellickson, who was also named the Gillette Presents American League Rookie of the Month for May, compiled a 4-1 record with a 1.36 ERA in five starts, leading all Major League rookies in wins for the month and finished tied for first among all A.L. pitchers. His 1.36 ERA was third-best in the league and was the second-lowest May ERA in franchise history, trailing Scott Kazmir''s 1.22 ERA in 2008. It is the third-lowest ERA of any month in club history, trailing only Kazmir and Matt Garza (1.27 in August 2010). The 24-year-allowed six runs (five earned) on 19 hits with 23 strikeouts, 15 walks and a .168 opponent batting average in 33.0 innings. The right-hander allowed the fewest hits among all A.L. starting pitchers with at least 32.0 innings of work and was seventh-lowest among all A.L. hurlers. The Des Moines, Iowa native held the opposition to five hits or less in all five of his May starts. In his first two starts of the month, both against the Orioles, Hellickson kept the Baltimore offense scoreless over 14.0 innings, allowing just seven hits total. On May 7th, the Rays'' fourth round pick in the 2005 First-Year Player Draft scattered three hits over 5.0 innings and struck out four to
lead the Rays to an 8-2 win in Baltimore. In his next start against the O''s on May 13th, Hellickson allowed four hits, struck out three and walked one to blank Baltimore, 3-0, at Tropicana Field. The 120-pitch outing was Hellickson''s first complete game and first shutout of his career, and it was the first complete game hurled by an A.L. rookie this season. On May 18th, Hellickson allowed three earned runs on five hits and struck out six in 5.2 innings to down the Blue Jays, 6- 5, at the Rogers Centre. It marked his fourth consecutive victory, tying a career-high. He previously accomplished the feat from August 2-September 22, 2010. In his final start of the month on May 29th, Hellickson held the A.L. Central Division-leading Cleveland Indians to just three hits over 7.0 shutout innings en route to a 6-3 win in St. Petersburg. He struck out six and walked two. This is Jeremy''s first career Pitcher of the Month Award.

Also receiving votes for A.L. Pitcher of the Month were Detroit Tigers starting pitcher Justin Verlander (3-0, 2.62 ERA, 33 K, 10 BB, no-hitter vs. Toronto on May 8th); Red Sox starters Josh Beckett (2-1, 1.00 ERA, 31 K), Clay Buchholz (3-0, 2.08 ERA, 29 K, 8 BB) and Jon Lester (4-1, 39 K); Seattle teammates David Pauley (4-0, 0.56 ERA, 10 APP, 11 K, 0 BB), Erik Bedard (2-0, 1.39 ERA, 32 K, 9 BB) and Michael Pineda (2-1, 2.81 ERA, 36 K, 7 BB); Oakland starter Gio Gonzalez (3-0, 1.67 ERA, 35 K); Tampa Bay starter James Shields (3-2, 2.17, 1 SHO, 42 K, 9 BB) and the Twins'' Nick Blackburn (3-0, 2.53 ERA, 1 CG). The American League Pitcher of the Month, Jeremy Hellickson, will receive a specially designed trophy, suitably engraved, for his accomplishment.

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