Corbin Burnes becomes first player to earn Cy Young twice in the Venezuelan league

Panama National Baseball League (PBNB) player Corbin Burnes was announced as the CFB’s 2018-19 Venezuelan Baseball League MVP on Saturday. After leading the league with a .397 batting average last season, he claimed the Cy Young award for a second consecutive season as well.

Burnes joined other PBNB stars such as Jose Palomino (2016) and Tim Beckham (2013) as PBNB players to earn the title of CFB MVP on multiple occasions. Burnes is the first player to ever earn Cy Young for the Venezuelan league after the award’s inception in 1969. The Hamilton Mercury utility player also set the league record for homers (27) and tied the league for RBIs (71).

In addition to being the CFB MVP, Burnes claimed league honors in four other offensive categories, including its highest honor for being the first player to log a strikeout with two strikes in an inning.

Corbin Burnes is the first CFB player to be Cy Young Award winner since Chase Schafer and Blake Rogers of the Cardinals in 2011-12.

Corbin Burnes struck out twice with two strikes in the ninth inning of a game last season. This occurred when the Buffalo Bisons were losing by a run and the game ended in a tie, forcing the top of the ninth. On his first strikeout, Burnes looked up toward the Mets dugout and yelled, “Four strikes, man!”. On his second strikeout, he took some swings and mentioned that it felt like the heat from the fan in first inning. With the third and final two strikes, he actually went up the middle and was thrown out by Padres infielder Brett Wallace to end the game.

Corbin is a 2016 graduate of Hamden High School and played first base at Hamilton to start his junior season. He missed most of the high school season after suffering a broken leg in baseball practice.

During his high school career, Burnes led Hamden to a 12-8 record and a second-place finish in the Class LL C Conference championship game. He was named All-CCC North and All-CCC North Player of the Year and was named to the All-CT East Team.

In 2016, Burnes started at first base for Team USA in the Nat Bailey tournament, hitting .318 with two RBI’s in eight at bats.

Garret Ray, a shortstop for the Northern league team previously referred to as the Diamondbacks, won the Cy Young on Friday. Ray is a 23-year-old from Tucson, Arizona. He led the league in nearly every offensive category last season, batting .390 (18-for-49) with 18 runs, 14 RBI’s, nine doubles, three triples, one home run, 11 walks and 12 stolen bases. Ray won the CFB MVP award the year before as well.

Ray is entering his third season in the Diamondbacks organization. He was signed by the Chicago White Sox organization as an 18-year-old and made his major league debut for the White Sox last season.

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