Red Sox Have Four Gold Glove Finalists
The Boston Red Sox have four players that are nominated for the American League Gold Glove awards for their respective positions. Jacoby Ellsbury, Adrian Gonzalez, Dustin Pedroia and Kevin Youkilis will compete for the coveted baseball award with fellow AL players deemed to have had superstar seasons.
Ellsbury, who is up for numerous awards this offseason, has never won a Gold Glove. He set career highs in almost every offensive category this year and this award could be one of a few that Ellsbury will have on his mantle this winter. Ellsbury is up against Austin Jackson of the Detroit Tigers and Peter Bourjos of the Angels.
For Gonzalez, it’s an attempt to take home a third Gold Glove at first base and first in the American League. He won his previous two as a member of the San Diego Padres. Up against Gonzo are fellow AL East members, Casey Kotchman of the Tampa Bay Rays and Mark Texeira of the Yankees.
Pedroia is a previous Gold Glove winner, having won in 2008. The fiery second baseman is up against Yankees phenom Robinson Cano and Ian Kinsler of the Texas Rangers.
Youkilis also previously won a Gold Glove back in 2007 when he was patrolling first base. This year he’s up for the award as a third baseman against Adrian Beltre of the Rangers and Evan Longoria of the Rays. As Peter Abraham of the Globe points out, Youkilis had a -2.3 UZR (ultimate zone rating that measure’s how well a fielder tracks down balls that are deemed to be in his “zone”), which was one of the worst in the league. Abraham goes onto state that many voters take into consideration the offensive statistics when deciding the awards, hence the Youkilis nomination. Youk was one of the best hitting third baseman in the league.
The awards are voted upon by managers and coaches and will be announced on Tuesday night on ESPN2.
While the personal awards that some of the Red Sox players may take home this offseason won’t make what happened in the final months of the regular season any easier to deal with, it does provide some optimism to next season. After all, if four out of the nine starters are up for performance awards in their positions, then the Red Sox should be pretty good next year. The key words being SHOULD BE.
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