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Congrats on the Gold, Yolmer!

Rawlings/MLB recognize Sánchez’s truly remarkable season with the glove

MLB: Cleveland Indians at Chicago White Sox
Full recovery: Sánchez started the season very ... spacey ... on defense — then recovered to claim his first Gold Glove.
Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

You’ve seen the headlines and the happy tweets already, but congratulations to Yolmer Sánchez for winning his first career Gold Glove, as the best defensive second baseman in the American League.

Sánchez seemingly well outpaced his fellow finalists, Houston’s José Altuve and New York’s DJ LeMathieu. The clubhouse prankster well outpaced LeMathieu in a key (yet at 25% still minor, as manager and coaches’ “gut feeling” still comprise the balance of the awards) component of the Gold Gloves, SABR’s Defensive Index: Altuve score a mere 0.5, LeMathieu 7.7, Sánchez 12.4.

It makes you wonder whether the nerds get to tweak any of these awards, because for as fine a defensive season as Yolmer had, his profile (for anything but antics) is by far the lowest among the finalists. Perhaps he kept it close enough that the dominating Defensive Index finish eked him past the profiles of LeMathieu (Yankee, batting title finalist) and Altuve (adorable megamite MVP).

Perhaps even more impressive is the fact that Sánchez started very slow defensively out of the gate. To wit:

To Yolmer’s credit (and Scott Merkin’s, who hustled this announcement well last night on Twitter), he was digging the win in typically Sánchezian fashion:

And now, the highlight reel: