R. A. Dickey is the last guy to worry about whether he might win the 2012 National League Cy Young Award.
"That's outside of my control," Dickey told me while sitting in the visitors dugout at Atlanta's Turner Field. "I can only do my job and hopefully the numbers speak for themselves."
Those numbers going into his final start on October 2 show 20 wins, second most in the National League. And that from a player who just a couple of seasons ago had been written off by most major league clubs.
The Mets have been rewarded for taking a chance on Dickey as he became the ace of their staff.
Even before spring training, 2012 was a special year for the former Vol and Nashville native.
Dickey climbed Mount Kilamanjaro to raise money for a charity that prevents the sexual exploitation of young girls. He also wrote his first book, "Wherever I Wind Up", which among other things chronicles sexual abuse in his childhood.
Dickey was chosen by the Texas Rangers out of Tennessee in 1996, but it was discovered he was missing ligaments in his pitching elbow. He bounced around as he worked on a knuckleball, and 2012 has shown the fruits of his work.