From SABR member Mark Simon at ESPN.com on September 20, 2013:
Web Gems are fun. Players like them. Fans like them. There’s no reason not to like them. They’ve been a staple on Baseball Tonight since the term was coined by then-producer Judson Burch prior to the 2000 season.
They’re not necessarily a predictive statistic when it comes to indicating present or future defensive performance. But they give you a good sense of who in baseball is making the most eye-popping, wow-inducing, best plays in the opinions of our production crew and analysts.
We’re nearing the end of another season’s worth of Web Gems and with that in mind, I thought I’d share some of the fun Web Gem stats that our group has compiled.
• Baltimore Orioles third baseman Manny Machado leads the majors with 18 Web Gems, half-a-dozen more than the player with the next-most, Diamondbacks outfielder Gerardo Parra (12).
We should have seen it coming that Machado would be the leader this year. He had seven in only 51 games last season, which was a 22-Web Gem pace.
This could be the first time there has been that big a gap between the Web Gem champ and the runner-up since 2009, when Ryan Zimmerman had 19 and runner-up Mark Reynolds had 13. Zimmerman’s 19 are the most in any season in our five-year database.
Read the full article here: http://espn.go.com/blog/sweetspot/post/_/id/40573/machado-is-your-2013-web-gem-champ
Originally published: September 20, 2013. Last Updated: September 20, 2013.