The 2014 Awards
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Multi-Position – Lorenzo Cain, Kansas City Royals
“This is the first year of the Multi-Position Fielding Bible Award. The goal of this new award is to recognize players who bring versatility to their teams with their ability to play multiple positions, and who play those positions well defensively. Lorenzo Cain was so good in 2014 that if he played full-time in either center field or right field, he might have won the Fielding Bible Award at either position. He saved 14 runs in center field in 93 games he started there for the Royals on the season, and another 10 runs in right despite only 29 games started there. Cain's ability to play right field gives the Royals the best outfield defense in baseball by a wide margin with fellow FBA winner Alex Gordon in left field and baseball's fastest player, Jarrod Dyson, in center. In the closest of margins in this year's balloting, Cain edged out Mr. Versatility, Ben Zobrist of the Tampa Bay Rays, by three points, 92 to 89.”

First Base – Adrian Gonzalez, Los Angeles Dodgers
“Adrian Gonzalez has been the best defensive first baseman in baseball over the last six seasons but somehow he has never won a Fielding Bible Award. Until now. Gonzalez wins his first Fielding Bible Award, leading all of baseball's first basemen by saving 11 runs defensively for the Dodgers in 2014. That brings his six-year total to 62 runs saved, 12 more than Albert Pujols’ second-place total of 50. Every aspect of Gonzalez's defensive game is superb. He fields his position well, does a great job with difficult throws, and handles bunts and double plays with the best of them. But he's not flashy. Just consistently excellent.”

Second Base – Dustin Pedroia, Boston Red Sox
“This is classic Dustin Pedroia: in a game early in the season J.J. Hardy hits a ball sharply up the middle that literally goes through the legs of the pitcher. Pedroia ranges a long way from the normal second base position and dives to field the ball as it enters the grass in short center field. He gets up in less than the blink of an eye while his momentum carries him to the shortstop side of second base. He makes an incredibly difficult and accurate off-balance throw from the outfield grass that would be a huge challenge for a strong-armed shortstop, let alone a second baseman. And the throw has enough velocity to nab Hardy at first base by an eyelash. That one play shows so many of Pedroia's skills: excellent speed, great range, willingness to lay out for anything within reach, incredible quickness getting back up to his feet, quick reactions and a strong arm. This is Pedroia's second consecutive Fielding Bible Award and third overall.”

Third Base – Josh Donaldson, Oakland Athletics
“Josh Donaldson led all MLB third basemen with 20 Defensive Runs Saved. Here's another way to measure Donaldson's excellence. Baseball Info Solutions tracks a stat invented by Bill James called Good Fielding Plays (GFP). It's not as easy as it sounds to define a Good Fielding Play—there are 28 different categories of GFPs. Donaldson's total of 77 GFPs is 13 more than the 64 good plays handled by Colorado's Nolan Arenado. Donaldson is especially good making plays to his right where his excellent reaction time and strong arm really stand out. Nolan Arenado was second in the voting: Donaldson 114 points, Arenado 104.”

Shortstop – Andrelton Simmons, Atlanta Braves
“For the second consecutive year Andrelton Simmons wins the Fielding Bible Award with a unanimous vote, first on all 12 ballots for a perfect score of 120 points each year. That expression of how good Simmons is, as rated by the expert Fielding Bible Award panel, might actually fall short of how good he really is. His range is incredible. His reaction time is incredible. His hands are incredible, on backhand plays and on transfers from his glove hand to his throwing hand. And he has the strongest, most accurate throwing arm in the game. Simmons’ three-year total of 88 runs saved are the most in baseball by 19 runs (Alex Gordon and Jason Heyward have 67), and blows away the second-best shortstop total of 36 runs saved by J.J. Hardy by a huge margin.”

Left Field – Alex Gordon, Kansas City Royals
“It's a three-peat for Alex Gordon. Three Fielding Bible Awards in three years. And it was unanimous. Every voter had Alex Gordon ranked first. Gordon saved 27 runs for the Royals on the year. This is the highest total ever recorded for a left fielder since the tracking of Defensive Runs Saved began in 2003. Christian Yelich of Miami was a distant second with 13. Gordon's converted third-baseman arm has always set him apart. It counted toward nine of his runs saved in 2014, but his excellent range also makes a huge difference. His range in left field has been above average every year since he started playing there in 2010, but this year he had his career high with 16 Plus/Minus Runs Saved.”

Center Field – Juan Lagares, New York Mets
“In 2013, Juan Lagares started only 88 games in center field, yet he saved 26 runs there defensively for the Mets. He finished second in the 2013 Fielding Bible Award voting. This year he started 105 games, blew away the field with another 28 runs saved, and won his first Fielding Bible Award. His throwing arm in center field is superb and deeply respected by baserunners; he had six Outfield Arm Runs Saved in 2014. But it's his ability to cover ground that sets him above the rest. He saved 20 more bases on deep balls than an average center fielder (+20 Plus/Minus), the highest total among all center fielders. This is true despite the fact that, generally speaking, he plays on the shallow side. He had a +11 total on shallow balls, second best among center fielders. His +9 on medium hit balls was fourth best. Lagares finished first on every ballot except one.”

Right Field – Jason Heyward, Atlanta Braves
“The Fielding Bible Award voters were unanimous about Jason Heyward as well. Heyward is the best defensive right fielder in baseball, bar none. He has had double-digit runs saved totals in every season of his five-year career. What makes him so consistently good? He refuses to allow an extra-base hit. Over his career he has been a bit above average on shallow hit balls (+18 plays in the Plus/Minus System) and on medium hit balls (+31). On deeply hit balls he is phenomenal. +140! That means he has saved 140 more bases making catches on deeply hit balls than an average right fielder. He was +40 on deeply hit balls in 2014 alone. Think of it like this: he saved 20 doubles last year! He excels at picking the ball up quickly off the bat and he always takes a good route to the ball. Overall, he had 32 Runs Saved for the Braves defensively in 2014, the highest total at any position in 2014 and a career high for Heyward.”

Catcher – Jonathan Lucroy, Milwaukee Brewers
“It is high time that catchers become recognized defensively for more than just their throwing arm. Jonathan Lucroy is another first-time winner of a Fielding Bible Award and the first of a new breed. Lucroy has an average throwing arm, but his other skills are so much better than everyone else, the expert panel rated him the best overall defensive catcher in baseball in 2014. One area that he excels is in handling pitches thrown in the dirt and other potential wild pitches. Baseball Info Solutions calculates a stat called Catcher Block Rate. It's based on how often a catcher successfully handles difficult pitches. Lucroy's 96% rate in 2014 was the best in baseball. The panel also received a preview version of the new Strike Zone Plus/Minus system from Baseball Info Solutions, previously available only to major league teams, but now to be unveiled in The Fielding Bible—Volume IV coming out in the spring. The system measures the ability of a catcher to frame pitches, to get strike calls on borderline pitches. Since 2010 Lucroy has gotten the most extra strikes called of any catcher in the game: 715 extra strikes, saving an estimated 85 runs. The next best total is a distant second: Miguel Montero with 407 extra strikes and 48 runs saved. The voting for the award was close. Lucroy garnered 105 voting points to 102 for Russell Martin of the Pittsburgh Pirates.”

Pitcher – Dallas Keuchel, Houston Astros
“Dallas Keuchel out-Buehrle'd Mark Buehrle. He one-upped the World's Best Pitcher, Clayton Kershaw. And he duked it out with last year's Fielding Bible Award winner, R.A. Dickey, and won his first Fielding Bible Award for defensive excellence at the pitcher position. Keuchel led all major league pitchers with ten Defensive Runs Saved, better than the second-best total of seven runs saved by Kershaw. The dynamic defensive duo of R.A. Dickey and Mark Buehrle, who've won the last five Fielding Bible Awards at pitcher, saved five runs and two runs, respectively, for the Toronto Blue Jays. Keuchel is channeling Mark Buehrle as he allowed only one runner to steal a base all season, but his ability to cover his position (seven runs saved based on the Plus/Minus System measuring range) is where he excels. Keuchel received 109 voting points. Kershaw was second with 95.”