Kim Ha-seong (28, San Diego Padres) has become the first South Korean player to win the Gold Glove, which is awarded to the best player at each position in Major League Baseball (MLB).
Kim was named the National League’s utility infielder Gold Glove winner in the 2023 MLB bi-league Gold Glove winners list announced on Monday (June 6).
Kim beat out finalists Mookie Betts (Los Angeles Dodgers) and Korean Tommy Hyun-Soo Edmon (St. Louis Cardinals), who teamed up with the Korean National Baseball Team at the World Baseball Classic (WBC) in March this year.
Kim became the first Korean big leaguer to win a Golden Glove in the All-Arounder category, thanks to his solid defence at every infield position except first base, including third base and shortstop, in addition to his primary position of second base.
Kim avenged the disappointment of missing out on the award after being a finalist in the shortstop category last year.
Kim is the first Asian infielder to be recognised for his defensive prowess, erasing the preconceived notion that Asians have a hard time finding a place in the big league infield.
After San Diego acquired Xander Bogaerts this year and moved him from shortstop to second base, Kim anchored the Padres’ infield this season, starting 101 games at second base, 30 at third base and 18 at shortstop.
MLB.com noted that Kim once again showed his versatility at second base, shortstop, and third base for San Diego this season, noting that in terms of defensive runs saved (DRS), a metric that measures how many runs a defender prevents, Kim had 10 at second base and three at third base and shortstop, for a combined total of 16.
His DRS at second base was the second-highest in the league behind this year’s National League Gold Glove winner at second base, Nico Horner (Chicago Cubs-12).
Horner was recognised as the best second baseman in the league, ahead of Ha Sung Kim and Bryson Stott (Philadelphia Phillies), who were also Gold Glove finalists at second base.
The winners are determined by a combination of votes from the 30 club managers, a coaching staff of up to six members per team, and defensive metrics from the Society for American Baseball Research (SABR), the organisers of the Gold Glove Awards.
The coaches’ vote counts for 75 per cent of the vote, outweighing the statistical defensive metrics (25 per cent).
For the nine traditional positions, including pitcher and catcher, Rawlings uses a combination of 75% of the coaches’ votes and 25% of SABR’s defensive metrics to determine the winners, with only the recently created Utility Player category using a proprietary defensive metric created in collaboration with SABR.
Rawlings and MLB.com did not release the winners’ specific voting ratings or fielding percentage scores.
However, we can use SABR’s defensive metrics to get an idea of Kim’s performance this year.
According to SABR’s defensive metrics for all National League outfielders, including all positions, Kim posted a 9.0, ranking ninth overall. First place went to Brenton Doyle (19.8), the Colorado Rockies’ Gold Glove-winning centre fielder, and second place went to Fernando Tatis Jr. (19.6), Kim’s teammate in right field.
Kim also had a higher SABR defensive rating than Horner (8.7). 토토사이트