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2007 Gold Gloves Announced; Wright, Beltran Are Good

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The MLB Gold Glove winners have been announced, and David Wright has collected his first for his terrific season at third base. Most zone-based defensive metrics had him at or near the top of the league, and he was especially effective at getting to balls outside of his zone. Gold Gloves are extremely subjective and are often incorrectly awarded to the best offensive player at a position, but Wright has worked very hard over the last few years to bring his glove up to the level of his bat and most will agree he has accomplished just that. In case you needed yet another reason not to move the kid off of third base, there you go.

Carlos Beltran also collected some goodies, nabbing his second consecutive outfield Gold Glove with the Mets. There were actually four outfield Gold Gloves handed out in the NL; a tie for third place was announced, though we don't know the actual tabulated results.

The big news in the American League voting is Derek Jeter failing to win his fourth consecutive undeserved Gold Glove. Despite ranking at or near the bottom of the pack among AL shortstops year after year in virtually every metric aside from JTORP (Jump-Throws Over Replacement Player), Jeter skated by on his hitting prowess and awkwardly mediocre looks.

Jeter is actually something of a fielding paradox: If you can ignore all of the balls he doesn't get to, he actually looks rather smooth in the field. He has pretty good hands, a decent arm, and is quite good at chasing down pop flies. He makes the occasional highlight reel play, which only serve to perpetuate the baseball myth that he is actually helping his team with his glove.

The truth is that Jeter costs his team between two and three wins with the glove every year relative to an average shortstop. He provides far more than that at the plate, but his three Gold Gloves put him in fairly elite company among shortstops, whether he belongs there or not (read: not).

Only two winners of this year's Fielding Bible Awards took home actual MLB hardware: Andruw Jones and Johan Santana.

Here are the winners of the 2007 MLB Gold Gloves:

NATIONAL LEAGUE
C Russell Martin, LAD
1B Derrek Lee, CHC
2B Orlando Hudson, ARI
3B David Wright, NYM
SS Jimmy Rollins, PHI
OF Carlos Beltran, NYM
OF Andruw Jones, ATL
OF Jeff Francoeur, ATL
OF Aaron Rowand, PHI
P Greg Maddux, SD
AMERICAN LEAGUE
C Ivan Rodriguez, DET
1B Kevin Youkilis, BOS
2B Placido Polanco, DET
3B Adrian Beltre, SEA
SS Orlando Cabrera, LAA
OF Ichiro Suzuki, SEA
OF Torii Hunter, MIN
OF Grady Sizemore, CLE
P Johan Santana, MIN