Shaikin: Defensive rankings will help determine Gold Glove winners

From Bill Shaikin at the Los Angeles Times on August 19, 2013:

Can a player’s defensive performance be measured with one number that can be used to rank him at his position and others?

The Society for American Baseball Research (SABR) says yes. That number will play a significant role in determining the Gold Glove awards this season, the society, known as SABR, and Gold Glove sponsor Rawlings announced Monday.

Managers and coaches will continue to vote for the Gold Glove awards, but the new SABR Defensive Index (SDI) will count for about 25% of the vote, according to the announcement. Managers and coaches will be provided with the SDI rankings as well and invited to consider them.

“There will be some that would look at it,” Tampa Bay Rays Manager Joe Maddon said. “I think it would be a minority that would actually look at it.”

Maddon said he would find such information “very useful and very helpful.” He is one of baseball’s most statistically minded managers, and his organization uses such metrics to evaluate potential player acquisitions.

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Originally published: August 19, 2013. Last Updated: August 19, 2013.