A’s right fielder Josh Reddick and third baseman Brandon Inge are top-three finalists for Gold Glove awards. Winners will be announced at 6 p.m. Tuesday on ESPN2.
The awards, given to the best defensive player at each position in both leagues, are voted on by major league managers and coaches. Reddick is competing against the Kansas City Royals’ Jeff Francoeur and Cleveland Indians’ Shin-Soo Choo in right field. Inge’s competition at third base is the Texas Rangers’ Adrian Beltre and Royals’ Mike Moustakas.
Votes were cast in early September, and A’s manager Bob Melvin said then that he believed Reddick got good support around the American League. Reddick, in his first full big league season, finished third among major league outfielders with 15 assists. But one of the other finalists, Francoeur, led the majors with 19.
To be honest, I think Reddick’s big offensive numbers might help his chance at this award. Surely his 32 homers caught the attention of coaching staffs around the league. And backwards as it sounds, sometimes it takes offensive stats for players to get their defensive play recognized. Working against Reddick is the fact that Francoeur has a long-standing reputation as a good defender and is a previous Gold Glove winner (2007).
Inge, who missed the final month of the regular season with a shoulder injury, has never won a Gold Glove in his 12-year career. Beltre is a three-time winner.
The A’s haven’t had a Gold Glove winner since third baseman Eric Chavez was honored in 2006.