Brett Gardner has long been thought of as one of the best defensive left fielders in baseball. Now he’s got the hardware to prove it.
Gardner won his first career Gold Glove for fielding excellence Tuesday night, beating out four-time winner Alex Gordon of the Royals and Houston’s Colby Rasmus, who were the other two finalists. The results were announced on ESPN.
Gardner, who was a finalist last year, is the first Yankee outfielder to win the award since Bernie Williams won four straight from 1997-2000 and he’s the first Yankee at any position to win since Mark Teixeira and Robinson Cano in 2012. According to ESPN’s Mark Simon, the only other Yankee left fielders to win Gold Gloves are Norm Siebern (1958) and Dave Winfield (1981-82).
Gardner made several remarkable plays during the year, including what might have been the best catch by a Yankee all season when he leapt into the left-field stands in Anaheim to snare what would’ve been a homer for the Angels’ C.J. Cron on Aug. 20.
Another sparkler: Gardner leapt at the left-field wall to make a catch for the final out of the Yanks’ 7-6 victory at the Stadium on Sept. 6. The bases were loaded at the time.
Gardner isn’t afraid of crashing into the wall.
Stat-wise, Gardner was third among big-league left fielders with 249 putouts and he led all left fielders with 1.84 putouts/nine innings. He led all left fielders with 86 out-of-zone plays made, according to FanGraphs, and was fourth with 12 defensive runs saved.
In a video review performed by The Fielding Bible, Gardner was credited with 22 “good fielding plays,” tied for third among left fielders. He also had nine outfield assists, the most by a Yankee since Curtis Granderson had 11 in 2011.
The Gold Gloves are chosen with a combination of votes from managers and coaches, who cannot vote for their own players, and statistical analysis.
Gardner was the only Yankee finalist for a Gold Glove. No Mets made the cutdown to the final three, though pitcher Bartolo Colon certainly had a case.
Source: NY Daily News Headlines Sports News