Major League Baseball announced the recipients of the 2019 Wilson Defensive Player of the Year Awards, and Cleveland Indians catcher Roberto Perez was the biggest winner. He took home hardware at his position and overall Player of the Year honors, while the Houston Astros were named Defensive Team of the Year.
A Wilson Defensive Player of the Year Award recognizes the top defensive player at each position across both leagues. A top Overall Defensive Player is also awarded, and since 2014, it has recognized the best overall defensive team.
Winners, both individual positions and the team award, are determined using a formula that combines traditional defensive stats with advanced metrics, as well as the data logged by the baseball experts working for the scouting service Inside Edge.
For position players, that breaks down to 25% Defensive War, 25% Defensive Runs Saved, 20% Inside Edge Fielding ratings, 20% Inside Edge arm ratings, and 10% fielding percentage.
Perez appeared in 118 games this season, logging 993.1 innings at the catcher position. He paced his peers with 29 defensive runs saved and did not allow a passed ball all year.
Perez additionally posted a stellar .997 fielding percentage and threw out 20-of-49 baserunners that attempted a stolen base. The Defensive Player of the Year honor marks the first in his six-year career.
The Astros as a team finished fourth in MLB with 90 defensive runs saved, 10th with a defensive rating of 9.9 and tied for 10th with an UZR/150 of 1.6. It’s the first time in franchise history they earned Defensive Team of the Year honors. The Dodgers won the team award in 2017.
Other 2019 Wilson Defensive Player of the Year winners include Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman, St. Louis Cardinals second baseman Kolten Wong, Oakland Athletics third baseman Matt Chapman, Los Angeles Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons, Arizona Diamondbacks left fielder David Peralta and Milwaukee Brewers center fielder Lorenzo Cain.
New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge additionally earned the 2019 Wilson Defensive Player of the Year Award for right fielders, besting Los Angeles Dodgers All-Star Cody Bellinger.
Bellinger previously won a pair of 2019 Fielding Bible Awards for his defensive efforts during the 2019 season, and most recently, his first career Gold Glove Award in right field.
Bellinger is also in the running for the Rawlings Platinum Glove Award. The winner will be unveiled on Friday, Nov. 8, at 6:15 p.m. PT.
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