Padres push Kouz for Gold Glove …
Hello from San Francisco, where we’re settling in for the second game of a three-game series before heading home.
I wrote a story last month while we were in Milwaukee about the season Kevin Kouzmanoff is having on defense, saying that by fielding percentage alone — yes, there are other ways to evaluate the defensive worth of a player — he should at least be in the conversation for the NL Gold Glove.
We’ve had a lot of conversations and dialog about it. There’s the UZR component to all of this, though that’s not a perfect defensive metric. For my money, there isn’t one. And remember, it’s the managers and coaches who vote on the Gold Glove.
At any rate, here’s a story I wrote about the Padres making a push for Kouzmanoff, sending out DVD’s to National League managers.
What do you think about Kouzmanoff’s chances?
Corey Brock, MLB.com
SAN FRANCISCO — The Padres are going high-tech to help get the word out about Kevin Kouzmanoff’s strong defensive play at third base this season.
Last week, the Padres overnighted a DVD to the other 15 National League managers with a note that supports the team’s push for Kouzmanoff to win a Gold Glove Award.
The DVD, produced by Sandy Gonzalez, the Padres’ video producer/editor, covers one minute and 15 seconds and shows several plays that Kouzmanoff has made at third base this season.
Kouzmanoff goes into Monday’s game against the San Francisco Giants with the highest fielding percentage of any third baseman in the Major Leagues (.990). He has committed three errors in 296 chances.
No other National League third baseman has committed fewer than six errors in a single season where they had at least 300 total chances, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
What does Kouzmanoff think of all this?
“It’s cool, because they’re supporting me, they’ve got my back and they’re pushing for it,” he said. “I don’t know how it works. I know the coaches and managers vote on it. … But I guess the more information you can get out there, the better.”
San Diego manager Bud Black, who played with two Gold Glove third basemen in his career, said Kouzmanoff “deserves to be in the conversation” for the Gold Glove.
“Personally, I think he deserves it,” Black said. “I haven’t seen a better defensive third baseman this year. I was fortunate to play with two of them, George Brett [in Kansas City, 1985] and Matt Williams [in San Francisco, 1991, 1993-94]. Kouz is every bit as good as those guys in their Gold Glove years.”
Black said he has talked casually to other managers about Kouzmanoff’s defense but sending DVDs, especially for a team that is in last place in the NL West and doesn’t normally garner a lot of national attention, isn’t a bad idea.
“I think in our market and where we are in the standings, I think the thing to do is to make people aware of how good he is,” Black said. “He’s not a household name across the country, based on where we are in the standings this season and there are other guys nationally who get more exposure.”
The Kansas City Royals are also promoting outfielder David DeJesus for a Gold Glove, sending fliers out to American League managers. The Gold Glove is voted on by the managers and coaches from each league, and they may not vote for their own players.
Last season, Padres first baseman Adrian Gonzalez won his first Gold Glove. Other Padres who have won a Gold Glove include Dave Winfield, Ozzie Smith, Tony Gwynn, Benito Santiago, Ken Caminiti, Steve Finley, Mike Cameron and Greg Maddux.