Crosby one vote short of unanimous

NEW YORK -- Oakland Athletics shortstop Bobby Crosby was
just a vote shy of being a unanimous pick for AL Rookie of the
Year, and Pittsburgh Pirates outfielder Jason Bay won the NL award

Crosby received 27 of 28 first-place votes in balloting by the
Baseball Writers' Association of America for 138 points. Chicago
White Sox closer Shingo Takatsu received the other first-place vote
and finished second with 44 points, followed by Baltimore pitcher
Daniel Cabrera with 29 points.

Crosby, the son of former major league infielder Ed Crosby, said it was nerve-racking waiting for the announcement and that being a
unanimous pick "would have been nice."

"I think it's sweet either way," he said.

Bay, the first Pittsburgh player and first native Canadian to
win the NL award, got 25 of 32 first-place votes and 146 points.
San Diego shortstop Khalil Greene received seven first-place votes,
24 seconds and one third for 108 points, and Padres reliever
Akinori Otsuka was next with 23 points.

Pittsburgh had been the only pre-expansion team without a rookie of the year, with four players finishing second: first baseman Donn Clendenon (1962), second baseman Johnny Ray (1982), pitcher Mike Dunne (1987) and outfielder-first baseman Orlando Merced (1991).

Bay, traded by Montreal in 2001, the New York Mets in 2002 and San Diego in 2003, was surprised that the Pirates, whose rookies
have included Roberto Clemente, Willie Stargell and Barry Bonds,
never had a winner.

"It means the world to me," he said. "You walk into the
locker room and you see all those jerseys hanging up, it's kind of
amazing it never happened."

Bay got married in Seattle on Saturday to his college
girlfriend, Kristen. He was trying to sleep late Monday when he got
the call.

"November 2004, especially in a two-day span, is something I'll never forget," he said.

Crosby, 24, took over Oakland's shortstop job from 2002 AL MVP
Miguel Tejada, who signed with Baltimore. Crosby hit .239 with 22
homers and 64 RBI, his average the lowest for a non-pitcher given
the award.

"Filling in for Miggy, he had big shoes to fill," Oakland
manager Ken Macha said. "We told him to just catch the ball. He
did just outstanding at that."

Crosby led AL rookies in hits (130), doubles (34) and walks (58),
and was third among all AL players with 4.17 pitches per plate
appearance. However, his 141 strikeouts were the most for Oakland
since Jose Canseco's 152 in 1991 and he had a streaky
season that included a 1-for-23 slide.

"I had so many ups and downs this year," he said. "Next year
I think is going to be a bit more of a relief."

Crosby became the sixth A's player to earn the honor, following
Harry Byrd (1952), Canseco (1986), Mark McGwire (1987), Walt Weiss
(1988) and Ben Grieve (1998).

Bay hit .282 with 26 homers and 82 RBI. The 26-year-old from
Trail, British Columbia, had the most homers by an NL rookie since
Albert Pujols hit 37 three years ago. Bay started the season on the
disabled list while recovering from surgery on his right shoulder
and didn't play his first major league game of the season until May

His sister, Lauren Bay, was a pitcher for Canada's Olympic
softball team, making it two star athletes for a town with a
population of about 10,000. He's kidded her about how he'd fare
against her.

"If I faced her four times, I might hit her twice," he
remembered telling her. "She kind of spouted back that that was