SABR Defensive Index

SABR Defensive Index rankings released through July 9, 2023

JULY 14, 2023 — Tampa Bay shortstop Wander Franco and Colorado third baseman Ryan McMahon lead their respective leagues in the updated SABR Defensive Index™ rankings through the first half of Major League Baseball’s season.

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 SDI 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. SDI utilizes MLBAM’s Statcast, Sports Info Solutions data, and STATS Perform data as well as traditional statistics with advanced analysis.

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.

Franco’s SDI of 9.1 is the highest in the AL among all qualified defenders, ahead of Boston right fielder Alex Verdugo (7.5), Toronto center fielder Kevin Kiermaier (7.3), Toronto third baseman Matt Chapman (7.1), and Texas catcher Jonah Heim (7.0).

McMahon’s SDI of 11.1 leads all fielders in the NL, followed by San Diego right fielder Fernando Tatis Jr. (11.0) and Pittsburgh third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes (9.1). San Diego second baseman Ha-Seong Kim (8.0) and Chicago shortstop Dansby Swanson (7.8) round out the top five.

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 2023 season at The SDI is compiled by the SABR Defensive Committee, which includes former SABR Board President Vince Gennaro; Sean Forman of; Mark Simon of Sports Info Solutions; Ben Jedlovec, MLB’s Senior Director, Baseball Data Platform Product; former 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 9, 2023:


AL leaders

Player Team Position SDI
Wander Franco TBR SS 9.1
Alex Verdugo BOS RF 7.5
Kevin Kiermaier TOR CF 7.3
Matt Chapman TOR 3B 7.1
Jonah Heim TEX C 7.0
Andrés Giménez CLE 2B 6.5
Steven Kwan CLE LF 6.2
Anthony Volpe NYY SS 6.0
Luis Robert Jr. CHW CF 5.8
José Ramírez CLE 3B 5.7
Marcus Semien TEX 2B 5.6
Jake Meyers HOU CF 5.3
Jose Trevino NYY C 4.9
Alejandro Kirk TOR C 4.8
Alex Bregman HOU 3B 4.6
Mauricio Dubón HOU 2B 4.5
Josh Jung TEX 3B 4.5
Julio Rodríguez SEA CF 4.4
Jorge Mateo BAL SS 4.2
Connor Wong BOS C 4.2
Adolis García TEX RF 3.9
Zack Greinke KCR P 3.7
Michael A. Taylor MIN CF 3.7
Anthony Rizzo NYY 1B 3.6
Maikel Garcia KCR 3B 3.4


NL leaders

Player Team Position SDI
Ryan McMahon COL 3B 11.1
Fernando Tatis Jr. SDP RF 11.0
Ke’Bryan Hayes PIT 3B 9.1
Ha-Seong Kim SDP 2B 8.0
Dansby Swanson CHC SS 7.8
Brenton Doyle COL CF 7.0
Gabriel Moreno ARI C 6.3
Miguel Rojas LAD SS 5.4
Sean Murphy ATL C 5.3
Carlos Santana PIT 1B 5.2
Thairo Estrada SFG 2B 5.1
Jon Berti MIA SS 4.7
Brice Turang MIL 2B 4.7
Austin Hedges PIT C 4.5
Willy Adames MIL SS 4.3
Nico Hoerner CHC 2B 4.3
Francisco Lindor NYM SS 4.3
Brandon Marsh PHI CF 4.2
Ozzie Albies ATL 2B 4.0
Nick Fortes MIA C 4.0
Bryson Stott PHI 2B 4.0
Pete Alonso NYM 1B 3.9
Ezequiel Tovar COL SS 3.4
Dominic Smith WSN 1B 3.2
William Contreras MIL C 3.0


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 7,300 members worldwide and has established itself as a vibrant baseball community and a premier distributor of ground-breaking baseball information. SABR features more than 80 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

Established in 1887, Rawlings is an innovative leading global brand and manufacturer of premium baseball and softball equipment, including gloves, balls, and protective headwear. Rawlings’ unparalleled quality, innovative engineering and expert craftsmanship are the fundamental reasons why more professional athletes, national governing bodies and sports leagues choose Rawlings. Rawlings is the Official Baseball, Helmet, Face Guard and Glove of Major League Baseball, the Official Baseball of Minor League Baseball and the Official Baseball and Softball of the NCAA and the NAIA. The company is headquartered in St. Louis. For more information, please visit

Originally published: July 14, 2023. Last Updated: July 12, 2023.