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John Dewan's Stat of the Week

2021 Fielding Bible Awards Preview Part I

By MARK SIMON For the next two weeks, this space will feature a two-part series on the top candidates for The Fielding Bible Awards, which will be announced later this month. The Fielding Bible Awards are voted on by a panel of 12 experts who can vote based on whatever criteria they choose, including observation and subjective judgement, as well as statistical [...]

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An Unlikely Defensive Runs Saved Champion

By MARK SIMON The 2021 team leader in Defensive Runs Saved was … the Rangers. Yes, the 60-102 Rangers. That’s not a misprint. They finished with 85, three more than the second-place Cardinals. The Rangers had by far the worst winning percentage of any team to lead the majors in Defensive Runs Saved. No other leader had won fewer than [...]

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Biggest MLB Surprises in 2021

By MARK SIMONOn this week’s edition of The SIS Baseball Podcast, we spoke with New York Times national baseball writer Tyler Kepner about the biggest surprises of the 2021 MLB season.These are some of the highlights:The Giants are the biggest surprise, as they were projected to finish below .500 but have cleared 100 wins and [...]

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2021 Minor League Standouts

By MARK SIMONThe Braves have a long line of excellent defensive center fielders, from Marquis Grissom and Andruw Jones to more recently with Ender Inciarte. There’s another pretty good one in the pipeline in Michael Harris.Harris, a 20-year-old who was born in Dekalb, Georgia, not far from Atlanta, led all minor league center fielders with [...]

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Cardinals Lead The Way ... Again

By MARK SIMONIn the ninth inning of a tie game against the Royals on August 8, Cardinals first baseman Paul Goldschmidt threw away a sacrifice attempt, an error that led to the go-ahead run eventually scoring.The Cardinals ended the day 55-56, 10 1/2 games out of the NL Central lead and 8 games back of [...]

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Marcus Semien's Sensational Season

By MARK SIMONThe Blue Jays have muscled their way back into the AL Wild Card race, and though it’s easy to say that Vladimir Guerrero Jr. has led the charge, the all-around excellence of Marcus Semien has also been a huge factor.If not for Shohei Ohtani, Semien would be leading the majors in our player [...]

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MLB Defensive Player of the Month for August

By MARK SIMON The Cardinals had a 3.30 ERA in August, 4th-lowest in MLB. They also averaged 7.5 strikeouts per 9 innings in August, the 4th-fewest of any team. The contrast there can at least partly be explained by the Cardinals’ standout defense. After a strong month, they rank 5th overall in Defensive Runs Saved with 55, [...]

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The Baserunning Ways of the Rays

By MARK SIMONIn June we published a look at the leaders in the baserunning stat, Net Gain. The Padres were way ahead of the field and didn’t look like they would be caught.Much like the standings have shifted against San Diego’s playoff hopes, so too has the Net Gain leaderboard. And the new team on [...]

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A Giant(s)Step Forward

By MARK SIMONHeading into the 2021 season, the Giants were an afterthought in the NL West given how the Dodgers and Padres were expected to be among the best teams in MLB.But on this day, it’s the Giants who have the top record in baseball. They’ve been arguably the sport’s biggest surprise this season.The Giants have done this [...]

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Zack Wheeler's 2021 Success

By MARK SIMONWith the Phillies having overtaken the Mets for first place in the NL East, there has been a recent clamor pushing Bryce Harper as a potential MVP candidate.But, at least by our calculations, there’s someone else on the Phillies who has been considerably more valuable than Harper has been.We’re referring to Zack Wheeler, who shut out [...]

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