Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

Rawlings Gold Glove Winners for 2013

Not many surprises in 2013 selections.

Last evening, the winners of the 2013 Rawlings Gold Gloves were revealed on ESPN2. The majority of those that won were expected…at least in my mind. There was a surprise or two. There were also eight first-time winners.

Here’s the list.

American League

Catcher – Salvador Perez, Kansas City Royals
First Base – Eric Hosmer, Kansas City Royals
Second Base – Dustin Pedroia, Boston Red Sox
Third Base – Manny Machado, Baltimore Orioles
Shortstop – J.J. Hardy, Baltimore Orioles
Left Field – Alex Gordon, Kansas City Royals
Center Field – Adam Jones, Baltimore Orioles
Right Field – Shane Victorino, Boston Red Sox
Pitcher – R.A. Dickey, Toronto Blue Jays

Can’t argue a lot about these. Gut feeling is that first base, shortstop and left field were close.

Well, I can state an exception for center field. When the finalists were revealed, I scanned some defensive stats and immediately thought that Jones was here based on reputation and past wins. If you look back at the three years he has won…

2009: DRS = 2, UZR = -7.3
2012: DRS = -16, UZR = -6.5
2013: DRS = -2, UZR = -6.8

The other two finalists for CF, Lorenzo Cain of KC (17, 12.8) and Jacoby Ellsbury of Boston (13, 10.0), had vastly better numbers in these two areas.

National League

Catcher – Yadier Molina, St. Louis Cardinals
First Base – Paul Goldschmidt, Arizona Diamondbacks
Second Base – Brandon Phillips, Cincinnati Reds
Third Base – Nolan Arenado, Colorado Rockies
Shortstop – Andrelton Simmons, Atlanta Braves
Left Field – Carlos Gonzalez, Colorado Rockies
Center Field – Carlos Gomez, Milwaukee Brewers
Right Field – Gerardo Parra, Arizona Diamondbacks
Pitcher – Adam Wainwright, St. Louis Cardinals

Thought maybe, just maybe, Yadi would be dethroned by Pittsburgh’s Russell Martin as Martin had a higher DRS (16 to 12), but Molina posted a higher CS% (43% to 40%) and committed less passed balls (3 to 4). There was a huge discrepancy in wild pitches as Martin “allowed” 51 to Molina’s 22. That’s not all on the backstop. I realize that, but a catcher should help to limit that number.

I imagine Cubs and Dodgers fans are upset at the results for first, second and third base.

Most signs pointed toward Anthony Rizzo and Darwin Barney of the Chicago Cubs claiming wins. Same could be said of Juan Uribe of the Los Angeles Dodgers for third. Rizzo had a higher DRS and UZR than Goldschmidt. Barney was superior in these areas as compared to Phillips, too. And what of Uribe having a higher UZR than Arenado?

Goldschmidt won the Fielding Bible awards and Arenado did finish behind Machado in those same awards, so I suppose you could say “that’s that” as far as first and third are concerned. But within those same awards, Barney was second to Pedroia for second base. Where’s his prize here?

As I mount my soapbox, I will say the following. If you’re using the number of web gems as a measuring stick, stop. That should never be a consideration for any position at any time. I completely understand wanting the player from your team to win, but there are numbers that are also to be a component of the vote. Total number of web gems is not one.

All of the players that won the Fielding Bible Award also won Gold Gloves, so I suppose I can be thankful that some progress is being made in the area of defensive statistics.

Tags: Gold Gloves

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