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Milwaukee Brewers Have Four 2018 Gold Glove Finalists

Rawlings announced the finalists for the 2018 Gold Glove awards on Thursday afternoon. The Milwaukee Brewers had four of them.

It was a banner year for the Milwaukee Brewers, not only with the results of the season, but for their defensive play as well. During awards season, the Brewers figure to get their share of recognition, and it’s already starting.

Manny Pina, Travis Shaw, Christian Yelich, and Lorenzo Cain were all named as finalists for the Gold Glove award, presented annually to the best defensive player at each position.

Manny Pina

With a lightning quick pop time and a cannon for an arm, Pina caught an astonishing 41% of attempted base-stealers in 2018. The league average is only at 28%, giving Pina a huge leg up on his competition.

Pina was also credited with a +6 DRS season behind the plate.

The other finalists for the NL catcher position are Yadier Molina and Buster Posey. This award has been Molina’s to lose for a long time now. Molina caught only 31% of base-stealers this year and Posey caught only 29% before missing the final two months with surgery.

Molina was also worth -1 DRS this season and Posey was credited with a +2 DRS season.

Normally this award automatically goes to Molina, but he hasn’t won the past two years and Pina had a higher CS percentage and had more defensive runs saved. He could actually win it.

Travis Shaw

Despite playing the final two months primarily at second base and spending little time over at the hot corner, Travis Shaw was named a finalist at third base for the NL.

Shaw put up a +9 DRS season over at third base this year in only 107 games at the position. He also had 10 errors on the season.

The other finalists are Nolan Arenado and Anthony Rendon. Arenado has won the Gold Glove every year he’s been in the league, and I don’t think Shaw is going to change that this season.

Although Arenado had four more errors than Shaw and only had +5 DRS, reputation plays a big role in this award and Shaw’s numbers aren’t outstanding enough to dethrone Arenado.

Christian Yelich

Could the NL batting champ and likely NL MVP add a Gold Glove to his 2018 awards shelf? Possibly.

Interestingly enough, Yelich had 0 DRS from left field this season, where he was nominated. He was worth +5 DRS in right field in 2018, though.  Also, Yelich only made one error in left field and had three assists from the position.

The other finalists in left field with Yelich are Adam Duvall and Corey Dickerson. Duvall had +17 DRS in left field this season while making only one errors and adding seven assists. Dickerson had +16 DRS and also had seven assists and one error.

The odds don’t look good for Yelich winning this award, but he still has the MVP to look forward to.

Lorenzo Cain

This selection was expected. Lorenzo Cain hasn’t won a Gold Glove before, but he should be the favorite this year.

Cain posted a +20 DRS season in center field, robbing multiple home runs along the way. Cain also had 11 assists from the outfield.

The other finalists are Ender Inciarte and Billy Hamilton. Inciarte had a +17 DRS season but only had 6 assists while Hamilton had a +4 DRS season with 12 assists.

With what Cain brought to this team, his defensive metrics alone early on in the season put him in the MVP conversation. It’s a tough group this year as Inciarte and Hamilton are two speedy and quality defensive outfielders that will make this a close race.

But this award should belong to Cain this season.

The winners of the Gold Glove awards will be announced on November 4th. With four candidates this year, the Milwaukee Brewers should hopefully get at least one player to walk away with the hardware. At most they could get two. Cain should be the favorite for center field and Pina stands a decent chance to win at catcher.

Next: Grading Jhoulys Chacin’s 2018 Season

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The Milwaukee Brewers haven’t had a Gold Glove winner since Carlos Gomez in 2013. That stands to change this year.

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