Bruce, Phillips Gold Glove finalists
Rawlings released its finalists for the AL and NL Gold Glove Awards on Friday. Each position had three finalists per league. The Reds had two finalists in right fielder Jay Bruce and second baseman Brandon Phillips. Last year, Cincinnati had six finalists. Ballots went out in September and voting was done by Major League managers and coaches.
The voting was slightly altered this year. The managers and coaches got an assist this year from the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR). For the first time, Rawlings collaborated with SABR to formally incorporate sabermetrics as a component of the Gold Glove Award.
A committee of experts in baseball analytics and defensive measurement devised the SABR Defensive Index (SDI), which draws on and aggregates two types of existing defensive metrics: those derived from batted ball, location-based data, and those collected by from play-by-play accounts.
Click here for my story on Bruce and Phillips.
Click here for the national story on MLB.com.
P: Corbin (ARZ), Greinke (LAD), Wainwright (STL)
1B: Goldschmidt (ARZ), Gonzalez (LAD), Rizzo (CHC)
2B: Barney (CHC), Ellis (LAD), Phillips (CIN)
3B: Arenado (COL), Uribe (LAD), Wright (NYM)
SS: Desmond (WAS), Tulowitski (COL), Simmons (ATL)
C: Ellis (LAD), Martin (PIT), Molina (STL)
LF: Gonzalez (COL), Marte (PIT), Young (NYM)
CF: Gomez (MIL), McCutchen (PIT), Span (WAS)
RF: Bruce (CIN), Heyward (ATL), Parra (ARZ)
P: Buehrle (TOR), Dickey (TOR), Fister (DET)
1B: Davis (BAL), Hosmer (KC), Loney (TB)
2B: Cano (NYY), Pedroia (BOS), Zobrist (TB)
3B: Beltre (TEX), Longoria (TB), Machado (BAL)
SS: A Escobar (KC), Y Escobar (TB), Hardy (BAL)
C: Mauer (MIN), Perez (KC), Wieters (BAL)
LF: Cespedes (OAK), Dirks (DET), Gordon (KC)
CF: Cain (KC), Esllbury (BOS), Jones (BAL)
RF: Markakis (BAL), Reddick (OAK), Victorino (BOS)
Based solely on the advanced statistic numbers both Bruce and Phillips would not likely win the award this year. But the voting is often more subjective and based on what the managers and coaches see with their own eyes and hear based on reputation. That could possibly help Bruce, who has gained in reputation as an excellent right field each year. In traditional stats, Bruce and Parra each had three errors but Parra trumped Bruce in advanced stats like ultimate zone rating (UZR) and defensive runs saved (DRS).
If there was one surprise (while understanding it’s a subjective process), it was that Todd Frazier wasn’t a finalist. Frazier had a very good year defensively, especially in his first full year at third base. Frazier was third in the NL with a 9.7 UZR and third with a DRS of 5 behind Arenado and Uribe. Meanwhile, Wright missed a lot of time this year with an injury.