AUGUST 25, 2014 — Oakland’s Josh Donaldson has taken over the lead from Kansas City’s Alex Gordon in the American League SABR Defensive Index™ rankings through games of August 17, 2014, while Atlanta’s Jason Heyward retains a healthy lead among all National League players in the updated SDI rankings.
The SABR Defensive Index is used to help select the winners of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award® and Rawlings Platinum Glove Award™, presented by SABR.
The SABR Defensive Index draws on and aggregates two types of existing defensive metrics: those derived from batted ball location-based data and those collected from play-by-play accounts. The three metrics representing batted ball data include Defensive Runs Saved from Baseball Info Solutions, Ultimate Zone Rating developed by noted sabermetrician Mitchel Lichtman, and Runs Effectively Defended based on STATS Zone Rating and built by SABR Defensive Committee member Chris Dial. The two metrics included in the SDI originating from play-by-play data are Defensive Regression Analysis, created by committee member Michael Humphreys, and Total Zone Rating.
The SABR Defensive Index accounts for 30 total “votes” — or approximately 25 percent of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award selection process — that was added to the votes from the managers and coaches.
Heyward’s SDI of 23.6 through August 17 is the best in the game among all qualified defenders. The top five NL players as ranked by SDI, after Heyward, are: New York center fielder Juan Lagares (16.0), Cincinnati shortstop Zack Cosart (13.5), Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado (10.9), and Cincinnati rookie center fielder Billy Hamilton (9.9).
Donaldson’s SDI of 17.4 tops Kansas City left fielder Gordon (16.4) for the top spot in the AL. Rounding out the top five in the AL are: Seattle third baseman Kyle Seager (16.1), Boston center fielder Jackie Bradley Jr. (12.0), and Kansas City center fielder Jarrod Dyson (10.8).
The SDI results were released today by the Society for American Baseball Research.
Updated SDI results will be released periodically throughout the rest of the 2014 season at SABR.org. The SDI is compiled by the SABR Defensive Committee, which includes SABR President Vince Gennaro, Sean Forman of Baseball-Reference.com, Ben Jedlovec of Baseball Info Solutions, SABR Director F.X. Flinn, author and defensive metrics expert Chris Dial, and author Michael Humphreys.
Here are the top 25 players in each League, through games of August 17, 2014 (click here to view full SDI rankings by position):
For past results and full details of the SABR Defensive Index, visit SABR.org/SDI.
The Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) is a non-profit organization dedicated to fostering research and disseminating the history and record of baseball. Founded in 1971, SABR has more than 6,500 members worldwide and has established itself as a vibrant baseball community and a premier distributor of ground-breaking baseball information. SABR features more than 60 chapters and more than two dozen research committees, and produces three annual publications – two editions of The Baseball Research Journal and The National Pastime – in addition to other print and e-books. SABR also hosts two annual events: the National Convention each summer, and the SABR Analytics Conference in March in Phoenix. For more information about SABR, go to SABR.org.
About the Rawlings Gold Glove Award®
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Originally published: August 25, 2014. Last Updated: August 25, 2014.