Felix Bautista, Devin Williams named relievers of the year

Right-handers Felix Bautista and Devin Williams were named the winners of the Reliever of the Year awards in the American and National leagues, respectively, Major League Baseball announced Wednesday night.

Bautista was a unanimous selection by the voting panel, which consisted of all-time great relievers Mariano Rivera, Trevor Hoffman, Dennis Eckersley, Rollie Fingers, John Franco and Billy Wagner.

Bautisa is the first Baltimore Orioles pitcher to win the award since Zack Britton did so in 2018.

Williams is now a two-time recipient of the award, also winning it in 2020. Since the award’s inception in 2014, Milwaukee Brewers pitchers have earned NL Reliever of the Year honors five times. Josh Hader won in 2018, 2019 and 2021.

Although Bautista’s season was cut short due to Tommy John surgery, he still played a big role in helping Baltimore win its first AL East title in nine years. He went 8-2 with a 1.48 ERA in 56 relief appearances, striking out 110 in 61 innings.

Bautista, 28, also had 33 saves in 39 opportunities and was named an All-Star for the first time.

Williams, 29, also played a part in bringing home a division title, as the Brewers finished atop the NL Central at 92-70.

In 61 appearances out of the bullpen, Williams went 8-3 with a 1.53 ERA. He had 36 saves in 40 chances and recorded 87 strikeouts in 58 2/3 innings.

Bautista just completed his second major league season, spending both with the Orioles. Williams has spent all five of his big-league seasons in Milwaukee.