Texas Rangers Star Adolis García Wins First-Ever Gold Glove Award

It’s the golden hour for Adolis García.

The 30-year-old Cuban professional baseball player and Texas Rangers outfielder has earned his first-ever Gold Glove, an award given annually to the Major League Baseball players judged to have exhibited superior individual fielding performances at each fielding position in both the National League and the American League. Garcia earned the award as a right fielder in the American League.

Adolis García While his career-high 39 home runs during the regular season and eight in the postseason made headlines, you can’t overlook García’s tremendous defense in 2023. He earned the award, the fourth by an outfielder in Rangers history, due in particular to his cannon of an arm — his average arm strength of 93 mph. García had a team-best 11 outfield assists this season, which was tied for third in the American League. It was his third straight season with 10-plus outfield assists. He ranked third among qualified MLB right fielders in defensive runs saved (seven).

Toronto Blue Jays pitcher José Berríos is also first time winner. The 29-year-old Puerto Rican professional baseball pitcher, known as “La Makina,” managed to bounce back from his worst season in the big leagues in 2022, when he struggled to a 5.23 ERA, to win a Gold Glove.

In ’23, he was more like the Berríos of old, posting a 3.65 ERA over 32 starts. But Toronto also got stellar defense off the mound from the right-hander, who joins Marcus Stroman (2017) and R.A. Dickey (2013) as the only pitchers in franchise history to win a Gold Glove Award.

Another first time winner… Houston Astros utilityman Mauricio Dubón. The 29-year-old Honduran professional baseball utility player appeared at every position on the diamond except pitcher and catcher for Houston in 2023, spending the majority of thetime either at second base or in center field.

He was a slightly below-average hitter, so most of his value came from his defense. Despite spending about half of a season playing second base (616 2/3 innings), he finished with five defensive runs saved at the position and two in the outfield.

Cleveland Guardians second baseman Andrés Giménez won his second consecutive Gold Glove award. The 25-year-old Venezuelan professional baseball shortstop and second baseman led American League second basemen with 18 outs above average and 23 defensive runs saved.

 

Giménez is the second Cleveland player to win multiple Gold Glove Awards at second base, joining Roberto Alomar, who won three straight from 1999-2001.

 

Gabriel Moreno has become the first Arizona Diamondbacks catcher to win a Gold Glove award.

The 23-year-old Venezuelan professional baseball catcher led MLB backstops in defensive runs saved (20) and Statcast‘s caught stealing above average (nine) in 2023. And with only 19 Major League games played behind the plate entering the season, only two non-rookies (excluding pitchers) — Ramón Urías (10 games at third base entering 2022) and Pokey Reese (11 games at second base entering 1999) — played in fewer games at the position for which they won the Gold Glove Award. At 23 years and 229 days old, Moreno is the sixth-youngest catcher to win his first Gold Glove honor.

San Diego Padres Fernando Tatis Jr. has won his first Gold Glove.

Tatis took home the National League award in right field ahead of finalists Mookie Betts of the Los Angeles Dodgers and Lane Thomas of the Washington Nationals.

When Tatis was moved from shortstop to right field to begin 2023, we wondered how he’d fare out there. He was a revelation defensively, leading MLB with 29 defensive runs saved, and his average arm strength of 96.6 mph trailed only Rockies rookie Nolan Jones in the NL. Tatis’ 24 career games in the outfield before the ’23 campaign were the fourth fewest played at a position for which a non-rookie won a Gold Glove Award.

The Toronto Blue JaysTexas Rangers and the Chicago Cubs tied for the high among clubs with three winners each, Rawlings announced Sunday.

Berríos, and Giménez earned $50,000 bonuses in their contracts..

Voting was conducted among managers and up to six coaches from each team, who can’t select players on their own club. Since 2013, voting has been factored with a Society for American Baseball Research defensive index, which comprises about 25% of the total.

The utility category is based on a SABR formula and additional defensive statistics.

Andrés Giménez Could Repeat as a Gold Glove Award Winner This Year

Andrés Giménez could soon have a set of gold gloves…

The 25-year-old Venezuelan professional baseball shortstop and second baseman for the Cleveland Guardians, a Gold Glove winner last year, is among the finalists contending for the award this year.

Gimenez is among the three American League finalists in the second base position. He’ll face off against Houston AstrosMauricio Dubón and Texas RangersMarcus Semien. Dubon is also a finalist in the AL’s utility category.

Puerto Rican professional baseball player of the Toronto Blue Jays José Berríos (29) and Venezuelan professional baseball player Pablo López (27) are finalists in the American League’s pitcher race, along with the Minnesota Twins’ Sonny Gray.

Other Latino finalists include Minnesota TwinsCarlos Correa (AL, shortstop), Cleveland’s José Ramírez (AL, third base), Seattle MarinersJulio Rodriguez (AL, centerfield), Texas RangersAdolis García (AL, right field), Miami Marlins’ Jesús Luzardo (NL, pitcher), Arizona Diamondbacks

Gabriel Moreno (NL, catcher), Milwaukee BrewersCarlos Santana (NL, first base), New York’s Francisco Lindor (NL, shortstop), Colorado RockiesEzequiel Tovar (NL, shortstop), Los AngelesDavid Peralta (NL, left field), Atlanta BravesEddie Rosario (NL, left field) and San Diego PadresFernando Tatis Jr. (NL, right field).

Voting is conducted among managers and up to six coaches from each team, who can’t select players on their own club. Since 2013, voting has been factored with a Society for American Baseball Research defensive index, which comprises about 25% of the total.

The utility category is based on a SABR formula and additional defensive statistics.

Gold Glove winners will be announced on November 5.

Here’s a look at all the finalists:

American League finalists:

Pitcher: José Berríos (Toronto), Sonny Gray (Minnesota), Pablo López (Minnesota)

Catcher: Jonah Heim (Texas), Alejandro Kirk (Toronto), Adley Rutschman (Baltimore)

First base: Nathaniel Lowe (Texas), Ryan Mountcastle (Baltimore), Anthony Rizzo (New York)

Second base: Mauricio Dubón (Houston), Andrés Giménez (Cleveland), Marcus Semien (Texas)

Shortstop: Carlos Correa (Minnesota), Corey Seager (Texas), Anthony Volpe (New York)

Third base: Alex Bregman (Houston), Matt Chapman (Toronto), José Ramírez (Cleveland)

Left field: Austin Hays (Baltimore), Steven Kwan (Cleveland), Daulton Varsho (Toronto)

Center field: Kevin Kiermaier (Toronto), Luis Robert Jr. (Chicago), Julio Rodríguez (Seattle)

Right field: Adolis García (Texas), Kyle Tucker (Houston), Alex Verdugo (Boston)

Utility: Mauricio Dubón (Houston), Zach McKinstry (Detroit), Taylor Walls (Tampa Bay)

 

National League finalists:

Pitcher: Jesús Luzardo (Miami), Taijuan Walker (Philadelphia), Zack Wheeler (Philadelphia)

Catcher: Patrick Bailey (San Francisco), Gabriel Moreno (Arizona), J.T. Realmuto (Philadelphia)

First base: Freddie Freeman (Los Angeles), Carlos Santana (Milwaukee), Christian Walker (Arizona)

Second base: Nico Hoerner (Chicago), Ha-Seong Kim (San Diego), Bryson Stott (Philadelphia)

Shortstop: Francisco Lindor (New York), Dansby Swanson (Chicago), Ezequiel Tovar (Colorado)

Third base: Ke’Bryan Hayes (Pittsburgh), Ryan McMahon (Colorado), Austin Riley (Atlanta)
Left field: Ian Happ (Chicago), David Peralta (Los Angeles), Eddie Rosario (Atlanta)
Center field: Brenton Doyle (Colorado), Michael Harris II (Atlanta), Alek Thomas (Arizona)
Right field: Mookie Betts (Los Angeles), Fernando Tatis Jr. (San Diego), Lane Thomas (Washington)
Utility: Mookie Betts (Los Angeles), Tommy Edman (St. Louis), Ha-Seong Kim (San Diego)

St. Louis Cardinals’ Nolan Arenado Earns 10th Consecutive Gold Glove Award

Make that a perfect 10 for Nolan Arenado

The 31-year-old Puerto Rican and Cuban American baseball player, a third baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals, has become the fourth infielder to win 10 consecutive Rawlings Gold Gloves, when baseball’s winners for the sport’s most prestigious fielding awards were announced on ESPN2 before Game 3 of the World Series.

Nolan ArenadoArenado has won the National League‘s Gold Glove at third base in each of his 10 seasons in the major leagues. That streak ties former Seattle Mariners outfielder Ichiro Suzuki for the longest by a player at any position to start a career.

The only infielders who put together longer streaks were Hall of Famers Brooks Robinson (third base, 16 straight Gold Gloves) and Ozzie Smith (shortstop, 13 straight) and former Cardinals and New York Mets first baseman Keith Hernandez (11 straight).

The Gold Gloves once tended to favor repeat winners, but this year’s list of honorees marked a season of unprecedented change. A record 14 players won their first Gold Gloves, including all but one of the winners in the American League.

The AL‘s first timers were Cleveland Guardians pitcher Shane BieberNew York Yankees catcher Jose TrevinoToronto Blue Jays first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Cleveland Guardians second baseman Andres GimenezBaltimore Orioles third baseman Ramon UriasHouston Astros shortstop Jeremy Pena, Guardians left fielder Steven Kwan, Guardians center fielder Myles Straw and Astros right fielder Kyle Tucker.

The AL’s only repeat winner was the Yankees’ DJ LeMahieu, who was recognized as a utility player.

There was a little more familiarity among those who joined Arenado as Gold Glovers on the National League side. The first-time winners included Arizona Diamondbacks first baseman Christian WalkerColorado Rockies second baseman Brendan Rodgers, Atlanta Braves shortstop Dansby SwansonChicago Cubs left fielder Ian Happ and Cardinals utility player Brendan Donovan.

Philadelphia Phillies catcher J.T. Realmuto won his second Glove Glove, joining Houston’s Pena and Tucker in learning of their honor during the lead-up to their World Series contest.

“It’s a pretty cool moment, for sure,” Pena said. “[Getting] congratulated by our teammates. We know the focus is the game, so we’re going to enjoy this for a little bit and then get ready for the game.”

Pena joined Kwan and Donovan as winners during their rookie seasons, another record. The only other time in which there has been even two rookie Gold Glovers was 2020 (Luis Robert and Evan White).

In taking the honor, Pena continued to prove a worthy successor at the position in Houston to Carlos Correa, who won the award last season. Pena became the first rookie shortstop to win a Gold Glove.

“I heard that today and I was in shock because I didn’t know that was a thing,” Pena said. “But it’s pretty cool.”

San Diego Padres center fielder Trent Grisham won for the second time, while Los Angeles Dodgers star right fielder Mookie Betts won his sixth Gold Glove. Atlanta Braves pitcher Max Fried was honored for the third time.

Here’s a look at the 2022 Gold Glove winners:

American League
P: Shane Bieber, Cleveland
C: Jose Trevino, New York
1B: Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Toronto
2B: Andres Gimenez, Cleveland
3B: Ramon Urias, Baltimore
SS: Jeremy Pena, Houston
LF: Steven Kwan, Cleveland
CF: Myles Straw, Cleveland
RF: Kyle Tucker, Houston

National League
P: Max Fried, Atlanta
C: J.T. Realmuto, Philadelphia
1B: Christian Walker, Arizona
2B: Brendan Rodgers, Colorado
3B: Nolan Arenado, St. Louis
SS: Dansby Swanson, Atlanta
LF: Ian Happ, Chicago
CF: Trent Grisham, San Diego
RF: Mookie Betts, Los Angeles

Francisco Lindor Agrees to $22.3 Million Deal with New York Mets

Francisco Lindor has Mets his match…

The New York Mets have agreed to one-year contract with the 27-year-old Puerto Rican professional baseball shortstop to avoid salary arbitration.

Francisco Lindor

Lindor, who’ll earn $22.3 million, was acquired from Cleveland Indians last week along with starting pitcher Carlos Carrasco in a blockbuster trade that excited Mets fans.

New York parted with young infielders Andres Gimenez and Amed Rosario plus two minor leaguers in a deal that signaled the club is serious about paying for star players and contending immediately under new owner Steve Cohen.

The next step will be trying to keep Lindor beyond this year. The four-time MLB All-Star shortstop said he’s not opposed to signing a long-term contract with the Mets. He said he wouldn’t want to negotiate after the start of spring training, though.

Lindor had a down year at the plate during the coronavirus pandemic-shortened season. He batted .258 with eight homers, 27 RBI and a .750 OPS while starting all 60 games and earning just more than $6.48 million prorated from his $17.5 million salary.

Michael Conforto has also agreed to a deal with the Mets…

The 27-year-old half-Puerto Rican professional baseball outfielder will get $12.25 million in his final year before potentially becoming a free agent.

Conforto, who turns 28 in March, has become a steady and productive staple in the middle of New York’s dangerous lineup. He batted a career-best .322 in 54 games last season with nine homers, 31 RBIs and a .927 OPS. The slugging right fielder also scored 40 runs, played solid defense and was selected second team All-MLB. He made $2,962,963 prorated from an $8 million salary.

Conforto was drafted 10th overall by the Mets in 2014 out of Oregon State and helped them reach the World Series as a rookie the following season. The 2017 All-Star can become a free agent after the upcoming season and is represented by Scott Boras. Tthe Mets have said they’re interested in talking to Conforto about a long-term contract — and he sounded open to the idea. But this late in the game, reaching an agreement before he hits the open market could prove challenging.

Edwin Díaz has agreed to $7 million in his second year. Seth Lugo agreed to $2,925,000.

The hard-throwing Díaz was so awful in 2019 during his first season with the Mets that he lost his job as closer and got booed repeatedly at Citi Field. He got off to a rough start again last year but rediscovered the nasty fastball-slider combination that helped him lead the majors with 57 saves as a 2018 MLB All-Star for the Seattle Mariners.

The right-hander finished 2-1 with a 1.75 ERA and six saves in 26 appearances. He struck out a whopping 50 batters against 14 walks in 25 2/3 innings, reclaiming his ninth-inning role. Perhaps most important, he gave up only two home runs after serving up 15 in 58 innings the year before.

Díaz, who turns 27 in March, made $1,888,889 in prorated pay last season from his $5.1 million salary.

Lugo wound up back in an injury-depleted rotation last season because the Mets needed help there. The versatile right-hander prefers to start but has been more effective as a reliever the last few years. He went 3-4 with a 5.15 ERA and three saves in 16 games, including seven starts.

The 31-year-old Puerto Rican baseball player, a 34th-round draft pick out of Centenary College in Louisiana, earned a prorated $740,741 from his $2 million salary last season. Until the Mets finish assembling their pitching staff, it’s uncertain whether Lugo will be in the bullpen or rotation to begin the season.

Cleveland Indians Trade Francisco Lindor to New York Mets

Francisco Lindor is headed to the Northeast…

The 27-year-old Puerto Rican professional baseball player, nicknamed “Paquito” and “Mr. Smile,” has been traded by the Cleveland Indians along with pitcher Carlos Carrasco to the New York Mets, who have a new owner willing to spend at baseball’s highest levels.

Francisco Lindor

“They did not come cheaply,” Mets president Sandy Alderson said. “What we’re trying to do is create a new reality rather than deal with perception.”

The cash-strapped Indians sent Lindor, a four-time MLB All-Star shortstop — and one of baseball’s best all-around players — and Carrasco to the Mets for infielders Andres Gimenez and Amed Rosario, right-hander Josh Wolf and outfielder Isaiah Greene — a move Cleveland hopes will keep it competitive and capable of ending baseball’s longest World Series title drought.

Dealing Lindor, who’ll be eligible for free agency after the 2021 season, was inevitable for the midmarket Indians, who are unable to compete financially with MLB‘s big spenders and dropped roughly $30 million in dealing two prominent players and fan favorites.

“These are people we care about, not just players, and guys that loved the organization and have great memories here,” said Indians president of baseball operations Chris Antonetti, who said he was in tears when he spoke with Lindor and Carrasco. “Trades like this are really tough. But it’s the right thing to do.”

For the Mets, landing Lindor is a home run and another major move by hedge fund owner Steven Cohen, who bought the team on November 6 from the Wilpon and Katz families and has pledged to increase spending.

One of his next big-ticket moves figures to be signing Lindor to a long-term contract, something the Indians couldn’t do. Alderson said he hasn’t yet had any discussions with Lindor’s agent.

“We acquired Francisco because of his present ability and the possibility that he could be a Met long term. There’s no guarantee of that. It’s something we will approach in the next few weeks,” Alderson said. “At this point, we felt comfortable giving up the group of players we did for both Lindor and Carrasco. … We gave up a lot of control for short-term control, but I think we’re comfortable with that and what we might be able to do going forward.”

Lindor can affect the game with his bat, glove and legs. A two-time Gold Glove winner, he’s a career .285 hitter and has averaged 29 homers, 86 RBIs and 21 steals in his six major league seasons — all with the Indians, who drafted him in 2011 and developed him.

He has also been the face of the Indians franchise, with an infectious smile and joy for playing that has made him one of Cleveland’s most popular athletes. But he’s gone now, leaving the Indians without their best player and the team’s fans grumbling about owner Paul Dolan.

Carrasco is one of the game’s best comeback stories, overcoming leukemia to become one of the AL‘s steadiest starters. The 33-year-old has an 88-73 career record with a 3.73 ERA.

With an abundance of young pitchers, including Cy Young Award winner Shane Bieber, the Indians were in position to move a player of Carrasco’s caliber.

He can be replaced. Finding someone to fill Lindor’s shoes will be much tougher.

Lindor had $6,481,481 in prorated pay from a $17.5 million salary last year.

Carrasco is signed at $12 million in each of the next two seasons, part of a deal that includes a $14 million team option for 2023 with a $3 million buyout. The option would become guaranteed if he pitches in 170 innings in 2022 and is found to be healthy for the 2023 season.

New York’s payroll is approaching the $210 million start of the luxury tax.

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“It’s a significant demarcation,” Alderson said. “I wouldn’t say that it’s a line that cannot be passed.”

Cohen is hoping to turn around a franchise that has not won a World Series since 1986. He fired general manager Brodie Van Wagenen, brought back Alderson as team president and hired Jared Porter from Arizona as GM under Alderson.

De La Tierra Releases New Single “Puro”

De La Tierra is back with new music…

The Latin American heavy metal supergroup has released “Puro,” the first single from its upcoming sophomore album.

De La Tierra

De La Tierra, whose stated mission is to “elevate the roots of the Latin American continent where they were born,” will release their second album, II, on November 18 through Sony Music Latin.

The all-star band made up of Sepultura guitarist Andreas Kisser, Andrés Giménez of Argentina’s A.N.I.M.A.L., Los Fabulosos Cadillacs bassist Sr. Flavio and drummer Alex Gonzalez of Maná released their debut in 2014 and followed up with a slate of touring that included opening for Metallica on South American dates and playing Rock in Rio and other major festivals.

“This song talks about how life can take us in different directions, good or bad,” says Giménez of the gristly track. “Our soul is unbreakable. It’s up to us to understand if it’s time to be born, to grow, or to die. The payoff is always there. Nothing is easy, but nothing is impossible as long as you keep the pure power inside your heart.”

De La Tierra to Launch First U.S. Tour

Alex González and his De La Tierra are preparing to dirty up their schedules with a U.S. tour.

De La Tierra, the heavy metal super group formed by members of Sepultura, Maná, Los Fabulosos Cadillacs and A.N.I.M.A.L., will start their first U.S. tour on August 31 in Los Angeles.

de-la-tierra-2014-billboard-650

“We all come from very important bands who have made their mark in rock in Latin America,” says González, known throughout the Spanish-speaking world as a member of top-selling Latin rock band Maná. Just before the release of De La Tierra’s debut album in late 2013, he described the band as, “A very special union of four good friends.”

Andreas Kisser, whose Brazilian heavy metal band Sepultura has sold 2.2 million albums in the United States, brings heavy metal cred to the project. “The whole idea of doing a heavy band in Spanish alone was amazing for me,” Kisser said.

Kisser, González and collaborators Sr. Flavio from The Fabulosos Cadillacs and Andrés Giménez of A.N.I.M.A.L. will begin De La Tierra’s U.S. tour at the Fonda Theatre in L.A. They will also play Houston, New York, Miami, Chicago, Atlanta and San Francisco.

De La Tierra performed at Mexico City’s 2013 Vive Latino Festival, and toured throughout Latin America over the past year.