The 2015 Gold Glove winners have been announced. With the help of some Sabermetrics, MLB managers and coaches have named their top defensive players at each position. Here they are if you haven’t already seen them:
C Yadier Molina, Cardinals
1B Paul Goldschmidt, Diamondbacks
2B Dee Gordon, Marlins
3B Nolan Arenado, Rockies
SS Brandon Crawford, Giants
LF Starling Marte, Pirates
CF A.J. Pollock, Diamondbacks
RF Jason Heyward, Cardinals
P Zack Greinke, Dodgers
C Salvador Perez, Royals
1B Eric Hosmer, Royals
2B Jose Altuve, Astros
3B Manny Machado, Orioles
SS Alcides Escobar, Royals
LF Yoenis Cespedes, Tigers
CF Kevin Kiermaier, Rays
RF Kole Calhoun, Angels
P Dallas Keuchel, Astros
Kiermaier stood out this year as the outstanding defender relentlessly stealing highlight reels, and many of the others are guys we already know and love for their defensive mastery. Many believe that Andrelton Simmons was snubbed, but to me, Brandon Crawford’s selection is something we should all feel good about. Simmons is one of the greatest to play that position, and the fact that there’s anyone even in the conversation means that we’re spoiled for shortstops right now. Those two guys are incredible to watch, and I’m sure Simmons will have something to say about it next year.
I’ll leave most of the debating to you guys, though, and we’ll just get to the gloves!
Yadier Molina (8th GG selection)
Rawlings Heart of the Hide PROSCM41JB
Who else? Yadi might as well get handed this award before every season. He’s won it the last eight.
Yadi’s catcher’s mitt uses Rawlings’ Pro Mesh, which keeps it as light as possible. We’ve heard that black Heart of the Hide is the most durable of the HOH colors, and a Rawlings rep once told us that Yadi has been going through two a year with the hard throwers in that St. Louis pen.
Rawlings Heart of the Hide PRODCTJBT (2nd selection)
What can’t this guy do? He’s in the argument for the best all-around player in baseball. He stole nearly double the amount of bags that Mike Trout stole this year while trailing only Bryce Harper in OPS and adding his second Gold Glove in his free time.
Dee Gordon (1st selection)
Wilson A2000 1786 Superskin
Dodgers feeling pretty good about that deal, eh? Batting title, hit leader, stolen base leader, All-Star, Gold Glove…
Nolan Arenado (3rd selection)
Rawlings Heart of the Hide PRO12-6TI
The future. This guy has no ceiling. The Avalanche oughta give him a tryout in net. Its crazy to think how good the under-25ers are in the MLB, and Arenado is the best defender of the group. Legendary defensive 3rd baseman Brooks Robinson won his first Gold Glove at 23, then won the next 15. Arenado won his first at 22, and will challenge that number. He’s gonna need a trophy house, not a trophy room, for all the hardware he’s got coming his way over the next 10-15 years.
Brandon Crawford (1st selection)
Rawlings Pro Preferred PRO200-6KB
If it weren’t for Andrelton, this award would be Crawford’s to lose every year. He’s half-human half jungle cat. He takes your base hits from you and he makes it seem like a day at the beach. That’s gotta be emasculating. You put a good swing on a ball, hit it hard back up the box versus a beast like Madison Bumgarner, and then Crawford just swoops in, plucks it from the grass, throws a flat-footed seed across the diamond to get you out by a toe, then just puts his head down like “ho-hum just another robbery” and kicks some dirt. Add in the wet hair look and its just mean.
Starling Marte (1st selection)
Rawlings Pro Preferred PRO303-6KB
The outfield standard. The PRO303 was the most common pattern in our 2013 Gold Glove posts and there doesn’t seem to be any change in 2015.
Marte’s black beauty with yellow trim is a lesson on how to design a glove. A classic with just enough flavor.
AJ Pollock (1st selection)
Rawlings Pro Preferred PROS27HFKB
Another Rawlings H-Web for the win. Pollock’s looks like an old flame that just keeps getting it done. As an outfielder, when you break that leather in just right, it feels like all you gotta do is touch the ball and its gonna get sucked right up into the webbing. That’s the dream, and Pollock’s living it.
Jason Heyward (3rd selection)
Rawlings Heart of the Hide PRO303-6JB
The Rawlings H-Web sweeps the NL outfield.
Heyward seems like he’s been around forever, but he’s only 26 and about to get paid. His offensive potential has yet to be tapped, but his defense is consistently magnificent. Range. Hose. The total package.
Zack Greinke (2nd selection)
1.66 ERA, the lowest since Maddux’s 1.63 in ’95, when Maddux also won the Gold Glove. You have to imagine that if you’re throwing 1.66-caliber ball in this day in age, you have to be an outstanding fielder. Greinke is just that.
Rawlings with a dominant showing in the NL this year. Eight winners out of nine. Wow.
American League up next.
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