Roberto Perez, Catcher
Other Finalists: Yasmani Grandal (CWS), James McCann (CWS)
As noted earlier, Roberto Perez has the chance to become the Cleveland Indians’ first back-to-back Gold Glove Award winner since Grady Sizemore in 2007 and 2008. Regarded as one of the best catchers in the game, Perez lived up to his lofty expectations in 2020.
Perez played in 32 games behind the dish, starting 30 and completing 25 to total 256 innings behind the plate for the Indians on the season. Over the span that consisted of 768 outs, Perez was perfect, not committing an error during the 2020 season, recording 291 putouts and 21 assists. He was also able to lead all of baseball for caught stealing percentage, throwing out 71% of base runners that attempted to swipe a base on his watch, throwing out 10 of the 14 attempts.
The knock on Perez is the same one as Plesac, but in a slightly different manner. While Plesac missed time from a demotion, Perez didn’t play in nearly half the season after an injury riddled campaign. However, like Plesac, Perez still lines up well against the other finalists, especially since they are both from the same team.
Splitting time as the backstop for the Chicago White Sox, both Yasmani Grandal and James McCann are finalists for the Gold Glove Award. For Grandal, he appeared in the same amount of games as Perez behind the plate at 32, totaling a few more innings a 271.1. As for McCann, he totaled 245.2 innings over 30 games, meaning all three finalists played right around half of the games for the season.
Behind the plate, Grandal had two errors for a .993 fielding percentage after having 286 chances. Of the 284 successful opportunities, 271 were putouts while 13 were assists. However, Grandal had far less success in the stealing department, catching just 46% of steal attempts. In his defense, there were only 13 attempts against him, but seven were able to slide in safely.
As for McCann, he committed four errors on the season for a .985 fielding percentage over 261 chances. In the caught stealing stat, he allowed eight stolen bases and threw out just four steal attempts for a caught stealing percentage of 33%.
On the surface, one would think that Perez’s injuries hurt his chances at the Gold Glove, but when digging deeper he actually seems like the frontrunner. Games played is very similar across the three finalists and, like Plesac, Perez was the only one to not commit an error.