Rick Porcello of the Boston Red Sox won by five points over second-place finisher Justin Verlander of the Detroit Tigers. Verlander was first on 14 ballots but was left off two, while Porcello got eight first-place votes, 14 second-place votes and was listed on all the ballots.
Britton ultimately had more first-place votes than the Cleveland Indians' Corey Kluber (three), but was only a top-three finisher on 10 ballots. Kluber was listed on every ballot and had 12 third-place votes.
Of the 30 voters, 24 had Britton listed in their top five.
Britton’s 2016 season was regarded as historic on several levels. In addition to converting all 47 of his save attempts with a 0.54 ERA in 67 innings, Britton set a major league record with 43 straight scoreless appearances and posted the lowest ERA of any pitcher with at least 50 innings pitched in major league history.
Britton wasn’t part of the three top vote-getters announced as a finalist last week, causing a minor firestorm locally. Two of Britton's five first-place votes came from local media.
The award was decided by the Baseball Writers' Association of America and announced on MLB Network. The studio crew on television spent some time talking about Britton's season and his omission from the top three.