Clayton Kershaw won the 2012 NL Cy Young Award on Wednesday, a fact you surely know unless you’ve been on the moon or taking a Rip Van Winkle-like nap for the last couple of days. 

But there are things about Clayton Kershaw that you may have thought you knew, or never knew at all.

1. Kershaw attended high school with Detroit Lions Quarterback Matthew Stafford at Highland Park High School in Dallas, Texas. Other famous alumni from the school include Angie Harmon, Jayne Mansfield, Morgan Fairchild, Aaron Spelling, Doak Walker, Bobby Layne, Kyle Rote, Jr. and Chris Young.

Oh, and because every school seems to have one, would-be President Reagan assassin, John Hinckley, Jr.

2. In a high school playoff game against Arlington Martin High School, Kershaw threw an all-strikeout perfect game.

3. Following a Christian mission trip to Africa, Kershaw and his wife, Ellen, are building an orphanage in Zambia. The couple will also release a children’s book in January 2012 about their life since middle school and the effect the trip to Africa has had on their lives.

4. In high school Kershaw played on a traveling baseball team, the Dallas Tigers, with Los Angeles Angels Closer Jordan Walden, Dodgers top relief prospect Shawn Tolleson and the aforementioned Matthew Stafford.

5. Kershaw is the great-nephew of the astronomer that discovered Pluto, Clyde Tombaugh. Tombaugh was also keenly interested in UFOs, which would seem to make him a better uncle for former MLB player Bill “Spaceman” Lee

Clayton Kershaw is as talented a young pitcher as the Dodgers have had in their rotation in a generation. It also appears from his accomplishments to date that Kershaw is not only an accomplished athlete, he’s a remarkable young man.

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