For Roger Clemens, winning the American League Cy Young Award has become a November habit.
The Boston Red Sox right-hander, who led the league in ERA and strikeouts, collected his third yesterday, easily beating the Minnesota Twins' Scott Erickson.
"It can only help me down the road to get to Cooperstown, and that's what I'm working on," Clemens said, looking ahead to his Hall of Fame possibilities. "Three, four or five Cy Youngs got to give you a pretty good knocking on the door. Games with 20 strikeouts don't hurt either, and a couple world championships would help too."
Clemens, who also won in 1986 and 1987, got 21 first-place votes, four seconds and two thirds for 119 points in balloting by the Baseball Writers Association of America.
Clemens, 18-10 this year with a 2.62 ERA and 241 strikeouts, became the fifth three-time Cy Young winner and the youngest.
Erickson, 20-8 with a 3.43 ERA for the World Series champion Minnesota Twins, got three firsts, 12 seconds and five thirds for 56 points.
He led the majors with 271 1/3 innings, won the AL ERA title for the third time in six years and won his second league strikeout title. He had 13 complete games, his most since 1988, and his four shutouts increased his total to 29.
Clemens is the first AL starter to win the Cy Young without at least 20 victories since Pete Vuckovich of the Milwaukee Brewers in 1982 (18-6).
Clemens received a $100,000 bonus added to his $2.5 million salary for winning the award.
Jack Morris of the Twins got $50,000 for finishing fourth, raising
his 1991 income to $3.6 million.
* WHITE SOX: A proposal to move the team's spring camp to Glendale, Ariz., has fallen through, and the team is negotiating with the Phoenix suburb of Peoria.
Roy Pederson, executive director of the Maricopa County Stadium District, said that it had been determined an estimated $2 million in site improvements made that proposed deal uneconomical.
To join the eight-team Cactus League and get a chance to play the intracity rival Cubs, the White Sox would have to get out of the final 18 years of a 20-year contract in Sarasota, Fla.
The Red Sox reportedly are interested in moving to Sarasota.
The Orioles have said they might consider the possibility if their proposed deal with Naples, Fla., does not work out -- and the deal's chances suffered a serious setback this week.
* BREWERS: Milwaukee County's Board of Supervisors voted, 18-7, to join the city and the state in helping the team build a stadium that sponsors say is vital to the club's financial future.
Joining the club
The Red Sox's Roger Clemens yesterday became the fifth pitcher to win the Cy Young Award at least 3 times:
4 Steve Carlton, Phi, 1972, '77, '80, '82
3 Sandy Koufax, L.A., '63, '65, '66
Tom Seaver, N.Y. (N), '69, '73, '75
Jim Palmer, Bal, '73, '75, '76
Roger Clemens, Bos, '86, '87, '91