SABR Defensive Index rankings released through July 15, 2018

JULY 23, 2018 — Oakland third baseman Matt Chapman leads all fielders in the AL and St. Louis second baseman Kolten Wong has taken the NL’s top spot in the SABR Defensive Index rankings through the first half of the 2018 MLB season.

For the sixth consecutive season, the SABR Defensive Index will be 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 approximately 25 percent of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award selection process that will be added to the votes from the managers and coaches.

Chapman’s SDI of 17.2 is the highest in the game among all qualified defenders, ahead of Kansas City left fielder Alex Gordon (10.6). Detroit shortstop Jose Iglesias (7.6), Los Angeles second baseman Ian Kinsler (7.6), and Oakland shortstop Marcus Semien (7.4) round out the top five in the AL.

Wong’s SDI of 10.7 leads all fielders in the NL, followed by Cincinnati left fielder Adam Duvall (8.1), Milwaukee center fielder Lorenzo Cain (7.6), and Pittsburgh left fielder Corey Dickerson (7.5). San Francisco first baseman Brandon Belt and Colorado second baseman DJ LeMahieu are tied for fifth place at 6.6.

The updated SDI results were released today by the Society for American Baseball Research.

The final SDI results will be released following the conclusion of the 2018 season at The SDI is compiled by the SABR Defensive Committee, which includes SABR President Vince Gennaro; Sean Forman of; Ben Jedlovec, MLB’s Director of Engineering, Data Quality; 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 July 15, 2018 (click here to view full SDI rankings by position):


AL leaders

Player Team Position SDI
Matt Chapman OAK 3B 17.2
Alex Gordon KCR LF 10.6
Jose Iglesias DET SS 7.6
Ian Kinsler LAA 2B 7.6
Marcus Semien OAK SS 7.4
Aaron Judge NYY RF 7.3
Andrelton Simmons LAA SS 7.0
JaCoby Jones DET LF 6.9
Kyle Seager SEA 3B 6.2
Mitch Haniger SEA RF 5.9
Isiah Kiner-Falefa TEX 3B 5.5
Carlos Correa HOU SS 5.5
Francisco Lindor CLE SS 5.4
Chad Pinder OAK LF 5.2
Delino DeShields TEX CF 5.1
Matt Olson OAK 1B 5.0
Jose Ramirez CLE 3B 5.0
Rougned Odor TEX 2B 5.0
Kole Calhoun LAA RF 4.7
Mookie Betts BOS RF 4.6
Leonys Martin DET CF 4.3
Mike Zunino SEA C 4.3
Marwin Gonzalez HOU LF 4.0
Justin Upton LAA LF 4.0
Brett Gardner NYY LF 3.9


NL leaders

Player Team Position SDI
Kolten Wong STL 2B 10.7
Adam Duvall CIN LF 8.1
Lorenzo Cain MIL CF 7.6
Corey Dickerson PIT LF 7.5
Brandon Belt SFG 1B 6.6
DJ LeMahieu COL 2B 6.6
Orlando Arcia MIL SS 6.2
Nick Ahmed ARI SS 5.9
Billy Hamilton CIN CF 5.9
Addison Russell CHC SS 5.7
Albert Almora CHC CF 5.7
Manuel Margot SDP CF 5.6
Brandon Crawford SFG SS 5.5
Kyle Schwarber CHC LF 5.4
Nolan Arenado COL 3B 5.2
Ender Inciarte ATL CF 5.2
Nick Markakis ATL RF 4.9
Travis Shaw MIL 3B 4.9
Buster Posey SFG C 4.9
Michael A. Taylor WSN CF 4.8
Clayton Richard SDP P 4.6
Ozzie Albies ATL 2B 4.6
Trea Turner WSN SS 4.2
Matt Carpenter STL 3B 4.2
Ketel Marte ARI 2B 4.0
Freddie Freeman ATL 1B 4.0



To view full SDI rankings from the 2017 season, click here. To view the 2017 Rawlings Gold Glove Award winners, click here.

The winners of 2017 Rawlings Platinum Glove Awards, presented by SABR, were Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado and Minnesota center fielder Byron Buxton. Click here to learn more about the Rawlings Platinum Glove Award, presented by SABR.


About SABR

The Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering research and disseminating the history and record of baseball. Founded in 1971, SABR has more than 6,000 members worldwide and has established itself as a vibrant baseball community and a premier distributor of ground-breaking baseball information. SABR features more than 70 regional chapters and more than 30 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, visit

About the Rawlings Gold Glove Award®

The Rawlings Gold Glove Award® is a registered trademark owned by Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc. The award is correctly identified as the Rawlings Gold Glove Award. The name should not be shortened, abbreviated or otherwise misused. Proper identification of this service mark using the registration symbol and the Rawlings name is important to protect the integrity of the program and perpetuate this worthy tradition. For more information, please visit

About Rawlings

Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc. is an innovative manufacturer and marketer of sporting goods worldwide. Founded in 1887, Rawlings is an authentic global sports brand, trusted by generations of athletes from the sandlot to the pros. Rawlings’ unparalleled quality and expert craftsmanship are the fundamental reasons why more athletes choose Rawlings, and why Rawlings is the Official Batting Helmet and Ball Supplier of Major League Baseball®, the official baseball of Minor League Baseball™ and the NCAA®, and the approved baseball, basketball, football and softball of the National High School Federation®. For more information, please visit or by call (314) 819-2800.

Originally published: July 23, 2018. Last Updated: July 23, 2018.