A thing I learned Sunday morning was that MLB and Rawlings were announcing the Gold Glove award winners Sunday evening. It was strange that they were announcing the winners on a Sunday night against a marquee NFL matchup between the Patriots and Packers, and it was strange to me that they were announcing the winners more than a week before the other major awards. I don’t know who made this schedule, but it’s really confusing!
Anyway, my thoughts on the scheduling aside, the awards were handed out on Sunday. We already knew the Red Sox had a chance to clean up here as they led all of baseball with five finalists. Out of their five, only two ended up disappointed this evening. That would be Mitch Moreland and Andrew Benintendi. They lost to Matt Olson and Alex Gordon, respectively.
The Red Sox did get three Gold Glove winners though. The first was Ian Kinsler, who obviously didn’t spend the entire year with the Red Sox. He was brought on in large part because of his defense, however. A lot of the focus after he won was on the big error he made in Game 3 of the World Series, and I’m glad it ended up that we can just laugh about that now. It does, however, overshadow how good of a defensive second baseman he is. Remember Eduardo Núñez at second base? Yeah, me too. Going from that to a Gold Glover is pretty neat. This is Kinsler’s second career Gold Glove.
The second was Mookie Betts, who is basically a human Gold Glove at this point. Or not. That feels like a weird thing to say. Anyway, Betts is arguably the best defensive outfielder in all of baseball. It seems like a wild thing to declare about a right fielder, and I am obviously tremendously biased, but Fenway’s right field is not a normal right field and Betts could play center field for just about any other team in the game. He does everything in Fenway’s outfield, and that is why this is already his third Gold Glove. Oh, and he’s only been playing outfield for five years. Pretty good!
We save the best for last, and that is Jackie Bradley Jr. Finally! We’ve long known that Bradley is one of the best defensive outfielders in the game, but he’s never gotten the award recognition to go with it. It doesn’t seem fair, but he is unlucky enough to play in a league that is overflowing with elite defensive center fielders. The stars aligned this season, however. First and foremost, Bradley was amazing. He always is, but he seemed to take things to a new level in 2018. Additionally, two of his biggest competitors in Kevin Kiermaier and Byron Buxton were out for most of the year. All of this led to Bradley’s first Gold Glove of his career. I don’t know if he’ll win another one, but I’m glad we no longer have to worry about him at least getting one in his trophy case.