01/12/10 3:40 PM EST
Cone will be at Royals Awards Night
Former Cy Young winner will join Saberhagen, Greinke
By Dick Kaegel / MLB.com
The three aces are Zack Greinke, who won last year's award, plus Bret Saberhagen (1985, '89) and David Cone ('94).
Cone accepted the Royals' invitation on Tuesday to complete the triumvirate, it was announced by Toby Cook, vice president of community affairs and publicity.
The evening, presented by James B. Nutter, starts at 6 p.m. CT on Thursday with the Budweiser Pre-Party and continues with the awards show and dinner at 7 p.m. at the Overland Park (Kan.) Convention Center.
And the Cy Young aura doesn't stop there. A fourth winner, Mark Davis, also is one of the honorees. Davis was Saberhagen's National League counterpart in 1989, winning the Cy Young Award for the Padres.
Saberhagen and Cone will participate as Greinke is recognized not only for his Cy Young Award but as the Royals Pitcher of the Year. This will be Greinke's first Kansas City appearance since national baseball writers made him the runaway winner in the Cy Young voting.
"I haven't talked to Zack for a while," Saberhagen said. "It'll be a good time. I'm looking forward to it."
Davis, pitching coach of the Rookie classification Surprise Royals for the past four seasons, will receive the Dick Howser Player Development Award. Davis, who had 44 saves and a 1.85 ERA for the Padres in '89, spent 16 years in the Majors, including 2 1/2 seasons with the Royals.
Saberhagen also will join the reunion of the 1985 World Series champions on Friday at the Royals FanFest. Cook said that Cone is likely to take part in the FanFest as well in some role. The FanFest continues Saturday, also at the Overland Park Convention Center.
At Thursday's event, first baseman Billy Butler, after a breakout season, will receive the Royals Player of the Year Award and second baseman Alberto Callaspo, a .300 hitter, will receive the Joe Burke Special Achievement Award.
One secret is the recipient of the Mr. Baseball Award, named for franchise founder Ewing Kauffman. Last year, in the revival of the awards dinner, former team captain Mike Sweeney was the winner.
The majority of the honorees are Minor Leaguers, and the impressive list of presenters matches the names of Royals greats attached to the awards: George Brett, Paul Splittorff, Frank White, Willie Wilson and Sweeney.
Sweeney's award for a player who best represents the organization on and off the field goes to Wilmington first baseman Clint Robinson. He not only hit well .298 with 13 homers but spent many hours with kids at schools and a hospital.
Other winners include outfielder David Lough, who hit .325 for Double-A Northwest Arkansas and Class A Wilmington; left-hander Mike Montgomery, 6-4 with a 2.21 ERA in 21 starts for Wilmington and Class A Burlington, Iowa; outfielder Jarrod Dyson, who stole 46 bases in 56 attempts for Northwest Arkansas and Burlington, and catcher Salvador Perez, who threw out 33 percent of basestealers (28-for-84) for Burlington and Rookie Idaho Falls.
Super scout Art Stewart is flying in from Arizona to present the Scout of the Year Award to Louie Medina, who is responsible for bringing closer Joakim Soria to the Royals.
The Matt Minker Award for an outstanding Minor League official goes to Triple-A Omaha general manager Martie Cordaro. It will be presented by Jack Minker, vice president of the Wilmington club.
The Dan Quisenberry Special Achievement Award to an outstanding member of the community goes to LeRoy Zimmerman of the Metro Lutheran Ministry. Janie Quisenberry-Stone, widow of the late Royals pitcher, will join James B. Nutter in the presentation.
A limited supply of $75 tickets remains available until 5 p.m. CT on Wednesday. Fans can visit the Royals Awards Night homepage or call 816-504-4040.
Last year about 400 persons attended the event, revived at the behest of general manager Dayton Moore after an eight-year lapse.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.