Pedroia, Victorino are Gold Glove winners

October, 29, 2013
10/29/13
9:00
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Greg M. Cooper/USA TODAY SportsCatches like this one helped Shane Victorino win another Gold Glove.

The selections of Dustin Pedroia and Shane Victorino as Gold Glove winners are justified by advanced metrics.

And two Red Sox who didn’t win could make a strong argument that they were better than those selected.

Pedroia won his third Gold Glove in a season in which he led second basemen with 15 defensive runs saved (a metric calculated based on his ability to turn batted balls into outs and convert double plays, relative to his peers).

Additionally, Baseball Info Solutions does video review of every play in every game, classifying plays into 30 categories of Good Fielding Plays and about 60 categories of Defensive Misplays & Errors.

Good Fielding Plays are both Web Gem nominees (making the tough play) and other things that may go unnoticed (like hanging in at second base to finish a double play). Defensive Misplays & Errors are not just errors given by official scorers, but things such as bobbling a ball on a potential double play, resulting in only one out instead of two.

Pedroia had 89 Good Fielding Plays and 23 Defensive Misplays & Errors in 2013. His ratio of good plays to mistakes (nearly 4-to-1) was the highest of any middle infielder in the majors.

Victorino had 24 defensive runs saved in right field, the most he’s had at any position in a season in his career (for outfielders, defensive runs saved are based on the ability to turn batted balls into outs along with a component measuring the deterrent value of his throwing arm). His total ranked best in the AL, well ahead of Josh Reddick of the Athletics.

Victorino excelled at chasing down balls hit both in front of him and to the deepest parts of the outfield. His rating was aided by a number of catches made in Fenway Park’s right-center triangle.

Victorino's throwing arm also provided significant value. His nine outfield assists tied for the AL lead among right fielders with Torii Hunter.

This was Victorino’s fourth Gold Glove. He previously won three with the Phillies, all as a center fielder.

Jacoby Ellsbury lost out to Orioles center fielder Adam Jones, a winner whose selection will be controversial in the sabermetric community. Jones was the only Gold Glove winner who had a negative defensive runs saved total.

Ellsbury had 13 defensive runs saved, third-most among AL center fielders, trailing Lorenzo Cain of the Royals (17) and Leonys Martin of the Rangers (14).

At least Ellsbury can say he was a finalist. Teammate Mike Napoli led AL first basemen in defensive runs saved but was not even among the top three for the award, which was won by Eric Hosmer of the Royals.

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