NEW YORK (Reuters) - Philadelphia's Roy Halladay unanimously won the Cy Young Award as the National League's top pitcher on Tuesday, capping off a sparkling season that included a perfect game and a no-hitter in his playoff debut.
Halladay, a seven-time All-Star traded to Philadelphia from Toronto team last year for three prospects, became the fifth Major League Baseball pitcher to earn the honor in both the American and National League.
"The whole season was a dream come true for me," Halladay, who spent his first 12 seasons with the Toronto Blue Jays, told reporters on a conference call. "It was by far the most fun I've ever had playing this game."
The 33-year-old right-hander, who also won the American League Cy Young Award in 2003 while playing with Toronto, led the National League in victories (21), complete games (nine), shutouts (four) and innings pitched (250.2).
Halladay was named first on all 32 ballots cast by two writers from each National League city who are members of the Baseball Writers' Association of America.
St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright was second and Colorado Rockies right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez placed third.
The workhorse starter said he was most proud of leading the league in innings.
"To be able to go as deep as you can, as consistently as possible is something all starting pitchers strive to do," said Halladay. "Innings pitched definitely is something I take a lot of pride in."
Halladay joined Roger Clemens, Randy Johnson, Pedro Martinez and Gaylord Perry as the only dual-league Cy Young winners. His gap of seven years between awards is the longest by a multiple Cy Young winner.
"To be able to do it again after so long, continuing to battle through, it definitely means a lot more," Halladay said. "I hope that one of my attributes when I'm done playing will be my longevity and ability to compete."
Balloting was done before the playoffs began, so Halladay's no-hitter over Cincinnati in the opening game of the National League Division Series was not a factor in the voting.
The American League Cy Young Award winner will be named on Thursday.
(Reporting by Gene Cherry in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Larry Fine. Editing by Frank Pingue)