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Gonzalez: Award a way to thank Nationals GM Rizzo

Published on NewsOK Modified: January 17, 2013 at 7:48 pm •  Published: January 17, 2013

"It's hard to fill them up but I would love to walk right behind him."

Gonzalez finished third in voting for the National League Cy Young Award, behind R.A. Dickey and fellow lefty Clayton Kershaw. Kershaw was the 2011 winner of the Cy Young and the Spahn Award.

David Price, the 2010 Spahn Award winner, was this year's AL Cy Young winner.

"I think that's the ultimate goal as a left-handed pitcher to reach. A Cy Young is beautiful but a Warren Spahn is just as nice," Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez was the Game 1 starter for the Nationals in the NL division series after Stephen Strasburg was shut down late in the season. Washington was eliminated in five games — squandering a two-run lead in the ninth inning of Game 5 — after a celebrated season that brought playoff baseball back to the nation's capital for the first time in decades.

"We had such great guys," Gonzalez said. "Our rotation was unbelievable, our offense was incredible. Our defense, a couple of Gold Gloves. A couple of Silver Sluggers. I think our team numbers proved it. We had the Rookie of the Year. We had a bunch of guys that won so many awards.

"This, to me, was the icing on the cake."