Dewan: Who are the 2013 Fielding Bible Award/Gold Glove Award contenders?

From SABR member John Dewan at ACTA Sports on October 4, 2013:

The baseball regular season is behind us. It is an exciting time to look forward to the playoffs, but it is also a great time to look back at the players who have had excellent seasons. I am one of the 12 voters for The Fielding Bible Awards, which look to identify the best defensive players of the year. What follow are some of my considerations as I fill out my ballot.

This week, we’ll take a look at catchers and infielders. Next week, in Part II, we’ll look at pitchers and outfielders. In the tables below, the numbers next to the player names represent their Defensive Runs Saved.

Catchers: Yadier Molina is the reigning Fielding Bible Award winner at catcher, and he is the narrow favorite again this season. We estimate that he saved 12 runs this year, which trails both Russell Martin (16) and Welington Castillo (19). However, on a rate basis, Molina had them beat. Molina has thrown out 42 percent of attempted basestealers and has blocked 97 percent of potential wild pitches, both of which lead all qualified catchers. In terms of raw numbers, Martin has thrown out more runners and Castillo has more blocks, but Molina has better rates with fewer opportunities. The AL Gold Glove should be a bit less of a race with Salvador Perez separating himself from his competitors with 11 Runs Saved.

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Originally published: October 4, 2013. Last Updated: October 4, 2013.