Cardinals’ Molina wins 6th straight Gold Glove

St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina won his sixth straight Gold Glove award Tuesday, making him one of four players in the World Series rewarded for superior defense this season.

Boston Red Sox second baseman Dustin Pedroia and right fielder Shane Victorino also were honored, along with Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright.

Colorado third baseman Nolan Arenado became the 10th rookie to win a Gold Glove and first since Seattle outfielder Ichiro Suzuki in 2001. Atlanta shortstop Andrelton Simmons and Baltimore third baseman Manny Machado also were among the eight first-time recipients.

“It’s pretty awesome,” Simmons said in a brief interview on ESPN during the awards show.

The Orioles and Royals had three winners apiece, tied for the most of any team. Kansas City left fielder Alex Gordon won his third in a row, while first baseman Eric Hosmer and catcher Salvador Perez each received their first.

“I’ve got a trophy case back in Lincoln, (Neb.), so this one won’t be the chip-and-dip tray. This one will actually go up in the trophy case,” Gordon said. “It means a lot. The first one was pretty special, just because it’s the first one, but to be able to share it with two teammates makes this one the best one of all.”

Baltimore shortstop J.J. Hardy and center fielder Adam Jones were repeat winners, as was Rockies left fielder Carlos Gonzalez.

Center fielder Carlos Gomez became the first Milwaukee player to win a Gold Glove since Robin Yount was honored at shortstop in 1982, ending the longest drought for any team in the 57-year history of the award.

Toronto knuckleballer R.A. Dickey was the winner among American League pitchers.

Arizona’s Gerardo Parra won in right field after taking the NL honors in left two years ago. Other recipients in the NL were Cincinnati second baseman Brandon Phillips, his fourth, and Diamondbacks first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, his first.

“Pretty cool,” said Goldschmidt, who also won the Hank Aaron Award as the NL’s top hitter this season.

Now, a Gold Glove for Goldschmidt. Fits like a … well … you know.

“It’s a huge honor to get recognized,” he said. “There’s so many great players around the league.”

Since 1957, Rawlings has presented Gold Gloves to the finest fielders at their positions in each league.

Managers and coaches vote for players in their league but cannot select their own guys. For the first time this year, Rawlings added a sabermetric element to the balloting. The SABR Defensive Index made up about 25 percent of the process.

Six teams accounted for 14 of the 18 winners this year. Only two teams had multiple winners last season, when the Orioles had three and the New York Yankees had two.

“To win three Gold Gloves this year was very impressive I think, for our team, for our organization,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. “These young men who won these Gold Gloves have worked their tails off defensively, and the thing that impresses me so much is I think these kids are only going to get better and better defensively.”

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