SportsNation Blog Archives Brett Gardner
Yankees reject Phillips deal
The Yankees have been busy this offseason (which is the kind of thing that happens in the Bronx when they miss the playoffs), but they've finally found a deal they don't like. They've rejected a straight-up trade of outfielder Brett Gardner for Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips, reportedly citing Phillips' declining numbers at second. They might be right to be concerned -- though Phillips' power numbers are freakishly consistent (he's hit exactly 18 home runs in four straight seasons), his OPS plummeted to .706 in 2013. That's a worrisome sign for a 32-year-old second baseman, but could he have rejuvenated himself in Yankee Stadium, with its short porch and hitter-friendly reputation?
Are we really arguing about the merits of the American League Gold Glove winner in left field? Well, yeah. It's not like we have any NBA openers to talk about, and really, what purpose do the Gold Gloves serve if not giving fans something to argue about until we get to argue about MVP and Cy Young? The hot spot in this year's debate seems to be left field, where it appears Alex Gordon's assists trumped Brett Gardner's advanced metrics.
Brett Gardner or Alex Gordon?
Gordon led the AL with 21 outfield assists and a .991 range factor, but Gardner topped the charts in both defensive WAR (for the second year in a row) and UZR.
Are the Gold Gloves the gold standard?
The Gold Gloves are determined by the vote of managers and coaches. The Fielding Bible Awards go with 10 experts, including Bill James, Peter Gammons and Doug Glanville.
How important is defense?
The Red Sox and Dodgers led all teams with three Gold Glove winners each. You might also notice those teams didn't play many October games. Is defense overrated?