MLB

Rawlings Creates New Defense Award for American and National League Teams

The Rawlings Gold Glove Team Award will honor the best defensive teams in the American and National Leagues  

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Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc., has announced the creation of a new award the best team defense over the course of the regular season.

The company, the originator of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award recognizing superior defense at each position, will give the newly-created award to two teams, one in both the American and National Leagues. 

"Since 1957, the Rawlings Gold Glove Award has been an individual player award and the standard by which all defensive excellence is measured, and now 63 years later in 2020, we're excited to evolve this historic honor to include MLB teams," Mike Thompson, chief marketing officer for Rawlings, said. "The addition of the Rawlings Gold Glove Team Award will create a new level of competition by crowning the best of the best defensive team in each league."

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The Rawlings Gold Glove Team Awards will utilize a sabermetric model formulated by the Society of American Baseball Research known as the SABR Defensive Index, the company said.

The SDI uses two types of existing defensive metrics: those derived from batted ball location-based data and those collected from play-by-play accounts. 

According to Rawlings, SDI utilizes MLBAM's Statcast, Sports Information Solutions data, STATS, LLC data, and traditional statistics with advanced analysis. 

"SABR is thrilled to continue to assist with the Rawlings Gold Glove Awards and is honored that the SABR Defensive Index was trusted with identifying the premier defensive teams in both the American and National Leagues," Scott Bush, chief executive officer for SABR, said. "We look forward to continuing our work with Rawlings to acknowledge preeminent defensive play."

The inaugural Rawlings Gold Glove Team Award winners will be unveiled alongside the Rawlings Platinum Award recipients on MLB Network's Emmy Award-winning MLB Tonight on Nov. 6 at 6 p.m. ET. The program will be co-hosted by Stephen Nelson, Dan Plesac, and Ron Darling.  

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