Rockies’ Arenado wins fifth straight Gold Glove
New York — Colorado Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado won his fifth consecutive Gold Glove Award on Tuesday night, while Minnesota Twins center fielder Byron Buxton headlined a group of six first-time winners.
The prizes for defensive excellence were announced by Rawlings for the 60th time.
Arenado, Cubs right fielder Jason Heyward and Royals left fielder Alex Gordon were each honored for the fifth time, most among this year’s winners.
Rockies second baseman DJ LeMahieu got his second Gold Glove, joining Arenado in a banner year for the NL West. Diamondbacks pitcher Zack Greinke won for the fourth time in a row, and teammate Paul Goldschmidt took his third award at first base. Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford won for the third consecutive year at shortstop.
The World Series-winning Astros and NL champion Dodgers were both shut out. Houston pitcher Dallas Keuchel had won the last three years, but was beaten out this time by Blue Jays righty Marcus Stroman, who snagged his first Gold Glove.
“This is one of the main awards I always wanted to win,” Stroman said in an interview on ESPN. “I’m ecstatic. This is huge for me.”
Buxton and Twins second baseman Brian Dozier were also among the first-time winners. The group also includes Angels catcher Martin Maldonado, who ended a four-year reign by Royals backstop Salvador Perez. Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart and Marlins left fielder Marcell Ozuna also won for the first time.
“This is a special moment,” Buxton said.
Dozier beast out Tigers second baseman Ian Kinsler, the only Detroit player nominated.
Kansas City first baseman Eric Hosmer received his fourth Gold Glove, while Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons and Rays third baseman Evan Longoria each won their third. Simmons hadn’t won since 2014, and Longoria got his first since 2010.
Boston right fielder Mookie Betts and Braves center fielder Ender Inciarte each won for the second time.
Five teams had a pair of winners: the Angels, Diamondbacks, Rockies, Royals and Twins.
Arenado became the first infielder to win five straight Gold Gloves at the start of his career.
“Obviously, five, it’s a pretty special number,” he said. “It means a lot. … Right now I want to try to win as many as I can while I’m healthy.”
Barnhart beat out two big stars in fellow finalists Buster Posey and Yadier Molina, becoming the first Cincinnati catcher to win since Hall of Famer Johnny Bench in 1977.
“It’s as good as it gets for me. I’m a defensive guy and I take a lot of pride in that,” Barnhart said.
Molina won eight years in a row in the National League before Posey was picked last season.
“I am taken aback by it, to be honest with you,” Barnhart said. “Buster and Yadi are obviously two of the best guys in baseball.”
Every major league manager and up to six coaches on his staff vote for Gold Gloves. They cannot choose their own players. Four years ago, Rawlings added a sabermetric component that comprises about 25 percent of the selection total.