How ESPN arrived at the MLB Latino Face of the 2020s

ESPN Deportes and FiveThirtyEight derived each Latino Face of Baseball candidates' credentials from four perspectives.

Performance: A player's production on the field matters. So we used wins above replacement -- averaging together WAR from Baseball-Reference and FanGraphs -- to judge how much value a player brought to his team over the past few seasons. This included data from 2020 (with 35% weight), 2019 (45%, reflecting the larger sample of games) and 2018 (20%). That weighted sum was then used to rank our overall sample.

Expert Opinion: It was also important for us to capture the perception of each player by those who follow them closest. We asked 30 ESPN journalists to each rank their top five candidates, based on their own criteria. The results were gathered into a combined ranking, with players receiving five points for each first-place vote, four for second, three for third, two for fourth and one for fifth.

Search Interest: Being the Face of Baseball is also about popularity and attention. We looked at worldwide Google Trends search data since the beginning of last season, tracking the relative traffic for each player in our sample of players. The ranking was based on the Latino players who had the highest average search index from April 1, 2019 to Sept. 1, 2020.

Social Media: We wanted to measure how much a player is connecting directly with fans. So we used a combination of Instagram statistics -- total followers, interactions in 2020, interactions per post and views in 2020 -- to generate a master social-media ranking.

The rankings in each category were converted to a scoring scale with equal weight, where the No. 1 player got 25 points, No. 2 got 24, and so forth. The tally was used to determine our four finalists.

Finally, we conducted a fan vote as a tie-breaker among the finalists, using four ESPN Twitter accounts, to ask who they considered the Latino Face of Baseball. The winner received 10 bonus points; No. 2 got eight , No. 3 six and No. 4 four.