Blue Jays’ Marcus Stroman wins gold while Superman swings and misses
Rawlings announced their 2017 Gold Glove winners last night as first-time finalist Marcus Stroman claimed his first Gold Glove however on the contrary for Kevin Pillar who was a bridesmaid in the voting for a third consecutive season.
The former infielder converted pitcher in Marcus Stroman defeated Chris Sale and Alex Cobb to win the golden honour in his first go-round. No doubt the victory was bittersweet for the hurler as his teammate Kevin Pillar was unsuccessful once again in his bid to claim a Gold Glove.
Pillar lost out to Byron Buxton who had better defensive metrics than the Blue Jays human highlight reel. Unfortunately for Pillar, the man he lost out to the previous two seasons was not even on the ballot this time around as Kevin Kiermaier missed significant time with an injury last season.
The other American League winners were Eric Hosmer, Brian Dozier, Andrelton Simmons, Evan Longoria, Alex Gordon, Mookie Betts and Martin Maldonado round out the field along with Stroman and Buxton.
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Many Blue Jays faithful presumed Pillar would be the obvious choice after witnessing the human highlight reel make web gem after web gem all season long. However metrically, Buxton was the superior defender accumulating 24 Defensive Runs Saved while his UZR/150 was 13.1 last season. On the flip side Pillar had 15 Defensive Runs Saved and a 7.4 UZR/150 rating for his efforts in 2017.
Perhaps if Pillar took his efforts to the National League he would be more successful. The NL Winner Ender Inciarte compiled only 5 Defensive Runs Saved and a 2.6 UZR/150 rating in 2017.
Rounding out the National League winners were Paul Goldschmidt, DJ LeMahieu, Brandon Crawford, Nolan Arenado, Marcell Ozuna, Jason Heyward, Zack Greinke and Tucker Barnhart as well as Inciarte.
Next: Blue Jays’ Kevin Pillar will be denied Gold Glove once again
Regardless of an award or not, we can all appreciate Pillar for his defensive capabilities and what he brings to the Blue Jays when he is patrolling centre field on the daily. Congrats Marcus and better luck next season Kevin.