If you have lost patience with the Gold Glove Award as a measure of defensive excellence, the Fielding Bible Awards are here to help.
Voted on by a 10-person panel which includes the likes of Bill James, Peter Gammons, Rob Neyer, Joe Posnanski, Doug Glanville, John Dewan and the video scouting team at Baseball Info Solutions, the award aims to recognize the best defensive player at each position in major league baseball. This is the seventh year of the award.
Below are the 2012 winners:
C – Yadier Molina, Cardinals
1B – Mark Teixeira, Yankees
2B – Darwin Barney, Cubs
SS – Brendan Ryan, Mariners
3B – Adrian Beltre, Rangers
LF – Alex Gordon, Royals
CF – Mike Trout, Angels
RF – Jason Heyward, Braves
P – Mark Buehrle, Marlins
Buehrle, a unanimous choice, has won the award in four straight years while Beltre was the only other repeat winner. Trout, Teixeira, Barney, Ryan, Gordon and Heyward are all first-timers. Molina, who previously won at catcher from 2007-2010, took the award back after Matt Wieters won last year.
This year’s Gold Glove Award winners for the National League and American League will be unveiled during a special broadcast of ESPN’s Baseball Tonight next Tuesday.
The ALCS had a weird play in Game 4 on Tuesday night, but Game 4 of the NLCS did as well. This one involved Cubs outfielder Albert Almora, Jr. and his attempt to spark a rally in the bottom of the ninth inning against Dodgers reliever Ross Stripling.
After Alex Avila singled, Almora ripped a double to left field, past a diving Enrique Hernandez. The ball rolled to the ivy in front of the wall. Most outfielders there would’ve put their hands up, which would have alerted the umpires to call an immediate ground-rule double. Hernandez didn’t, instead fishing the ball out and firing it back into the infield. Avila had stopped at third base, but Almora kept running. Much to his surprise, he pulled up into third base to see his teammate standing there, resigned to his fate as a dead duck. Third baseman Justin Turner applied the tag on Almora for what he thought was the first out of the inning.
Almora, however, was then sent back to second base after the umpires correctly called a ground-rule double.
Unfortunately for the Cubs, the lucky break didn’t help as closer Kenley Jansen came in and took care of business, retiring all three batters he faced without letting an inherited runner score. The Dodgers won 6-1 and now lead the NLCS three games to none. They’ll try to punch their ticket to the World Series on Wednesday.