I’m going to go ahead and admit right now that I forgot to cover the three finalists at Shortstop for the American League. So I decided to just do one big post that involved all six players who qualified for this award. If you haven’t checked out my previous articles covering the finalists for this years Gold Glove race, please click here.
Andrelton Simmons, Atlanta Braves - This is one promising promising this Atlanta Braves team has on their roster. Not only can the man play great defense, but he can hit as well. This season was his first full year with the organization after appearing in 49 games with them in 2012. Through 157 games this year, Simmons hit 17 home runs and drove in 59 runs with a batting line of .248/.296/.396. The 24 year old shortstop out of the Netherlands fielded .981 percent this season with 240 put outs, 499 assists, 14 errors and 94 double plays. He’s making a serious push to win his first ever Gold Glove in just his first full season.
Ian Desmond, Washington Nationals - 28 year old Ian Desmond has provided a lot of power for this Washington Nationals team the last two season. He’s hit 45 home runs and has plated 153 runs. Desmond has played shortstop and only shortstop in the last three years before seeing some time at right field and second base. This year he started 158 games at second base and recorded 234 put outs, 446 assists, 20 errors and 96 double plays with a .971 fielding percentage.
Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado Rockies - Tulowitzki had himself a great season after bouncing back from only appearing 47 games. He played 126 this season and hit 25 home runs (eight in 2012) and drove in 82 RBI’s (27 in 2012) in his comeback season. Tulowitzki has always been a great defensive shortstop and has made a ton of excellent plays. One of the most athletic shortstops in the game as he put up a .986 fielding percentage with 182 put outs, 379 assists, eight errors and 84 double plays.
J.J. Hardy, Baltimore Orioles - Yet again, another Baltimore Oriole player gets their name placed on the final ballot for a Gold Glove award. Hardy won it last year and could very well repeat this season after having another spectacular year both offensively and defensively. Hardy hit 25 home runs with 76 RBI’s with a batting line of .263/.306/.433 while fielding .981 percent. The former Milwaukee Brewer (Thank you for that) recorded 230 put outs with 403 assists, 12 errors and 108 double plays.
Alcides Escobar, Kansas City Royals - The last two guys on this list happen to both be Escobar’s, no relation. The first one up is 26 year old (soon to be 27) Alcides from Kansas City. He’s one of a couple Royals players who played beautiful defense this year. He’s also a former Milwaukee Brewer who doesn’t have that much power behind his bat, but still finds a way to drive in runs. Escobar picked up 222 put outs, 395 assists, 13 errors and 89 double plays with a fielding percentage of .979 through 156 games started.
Yunel Escobar, Tampa Bay Rays - This is the final Escobar on our list as we finish up the final three of the American League shortstops. Escobar is a 30 year old veteran who will soon turn 31 years old who spent most of his career with both the Atlanta Braves and Toronto Blue Jays. In each of his last two seasons, Escobar has hit nine home runs and 50+ RBI’s but seen his defensive numbers drop a tad in each category. This season he picked up 208 put outs, 395 assists, seven errors and 88 double plays with a fielding percentage of .989.