Now that the MLB season is drawing to a close, it’s award time for the players. Just yesterday, the Houston BBWAA announced their 2015 award winners, which we covered here. Today, Rawlings announced the finalists for their annual Gold Glove awards and three Houston Astros made the cut at their respective positions: Jose Altuve, Jason Castro, and Dallas Keuchel. Here are the qualifying criteria:
- All pitchers must have pitched in at least 137 innings by his team’s 137th game
- A catcher must have played in at least half of his team’s games by his team’s 137th game (a minimum of 69 games)
- All infielders and outfielders must have played in the field for at least 690 total innings through his team’s 137th game (approximately 67%
Now, how does the voting work? In a nutshell, there are three major criteria:
- The award represents overall fielding excellence and is not solely based on fielding metrics and statistics. Offensive stats do not count.
- Only managers and their coaching staffs can vote.
- Managers and coaches cannot cast a vote for their own players.
Also, there is an SABR component to the voting (added in 2014), which comprises 25 percent of the selection total. This fusion of subjectivity (aka “the eye test”) and advanced baseball stats should appease the both the old and new school fans/styles of thinking.
Anyhow, let’s take a quick peek at how Altuve, Castro, and Keuchel stack up by the numbers against their competition.
By the traditional numbers (Errors and Fielding %), Altuve looks like a strong candidate. However, Kinsler’s outstanding 2.6 DWAR could be the factor that tips the scales in his favor.
As for catchers, Jason Castro faces off against the Blue Jays’ Russell Martin and the Royals Salvador Perez. This may come as a bit of a surprise to many Astros fans that Castro is in the running. However, considering the Astros’ slump in September when he was on the DL, Castro’s presence behind the dish may be more valuable than people realize. Here’s a peek at some catching stats that could affect the outcome of this race.
One would think that the amount of passed balls and low DWAR would count negatively against Martin (though he has a better caught stealing rate), leaving Castro and Perez as the top two. Castro and Perez are close in FPCT, Passed Balls, and DWAR, so this is close race.
Finally, there’s Dallas Keuchel. No surprise here as he was the 2014 Gold Glove winner for AL Pitchers. This year he competes against the Blue Jays’ Mark Buehrle (again) and the Athletics’ Sonny Gray.
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This one is a little harder to assess though it looks like Gray has the advantage due to Positional Outs and Fielding Percentage. However, Keuchel’s reputation as a stellar defensive pitcher could benefit him here.
We’ll have to wait a little while longer to find out the winners since the final announcement comes out on Tuesday, November 10.
Congrats to Altuve, Castro, and Keuchel. After a largely successful season, the Houston Astros are starting to receive the national recognition that they had not received in years past.
Tell us, Astros fans, do you think we’ll have three Houston players taking home new hardware for their defensive aptitude?