On November 10th, Nolan Arenado won his third-straight Gold Glove Award for the best defensive third baseman in the National League.
The Colorado Rockies selected Nolan Arenado in the second round of the 2009 MLB Amateur Draft out of El Toro High School in California. Arenado demonstrated a nice blend of hitting and defense; thus, the Rockies felt inclined to spend a high draft pick on the third baseman. Arenado spent four seasons in the Rockies’ farm system before making his debut in April of 2013. After being called up in the 2013 season, Arenado flashed glove-work better than any other third baseman over the past three seasons.
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Nolan Arenado won his first-career Gold Glove Award as a rookie with the Colorado Rockies, posting a .973 fielding percentage with 309 assists and 91 putouts. In Arenado’s rookie season, his glove was ahead of his bat, making the call-up easy for the Rockies. Arenado finished the 2013 season with 10 home runs and 52 RBI. Also, he possessed a .267/.301/.405 slash line in 133 games played. Despite being a rookie, Arenado’s defense was at an elite level the moment he put on a Rockies uniform.
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Nolan Arenado entered the 2014 season with one Gold Glove Award under his belt and a full season of play behind him. Despite playing in only 111 games in 2014, Nolan Arenado went on to win his second-consecutive Gold Glove Award. He finished the 2014 season with a .959 fielding percentage, 280 assists, and 69 putouts. He committed only 15 errors on the season; however, this proved to be Arenado’s weakest, albeit impressive, defensive season of his career. In addition to his plus defense, Arenado took a positive step forward with his bat, hitting 18 home runs, driving in 61 RBI, and maintaing a .287 average.
Colorado Rockies’ fans fell in love with the defensive wizard at third base, and entering his third season with the team in 2015, Arenado was destined for another great season (and that is an understatement). He put together an MVP worthy year in 2015, winning his third-straight Gold Glove Award while leading the National League in home runs (42) and RBI (130). Nolan Arenado put together his best defensive season in 2015, posting career-bests in assists (385), putouts (105), and double plays (42).
Below is a montage of some of Nolan Arenado’s greatest plays:
Nolan Arenado enters arbitration following the 2015 season, and the Colorado Rockies need to lock-up their superstar third baseman, fast. Arenado expressed his displeasure with how the Rockies handled the Troy Tulowitzki trade, but he will likely sign a long-term deal with the team sooner rather than later. There is no third baseman like Nolan Arenado in the National League, and the Rockies need to give the man what he deserves. Arenado is a bright spot on a rebuilding Rockies franchise, and he assumes the face of the franchise role now that Tulowitzki is a member of the Toronto Blue Jays.
While it will be tough to replicate the offensive numbers Nolan Arenado posted in 2015, his defense remains elite, and he should win his fourth-consecutive Gold Glove Award in 2016. It is a shame that Nolan Arenado did not make the final ballot for the 2015 National League MVP Award, because between his elite defense and hitting, he deserves to be a final candidate more-so than Joey Votto. Hopefully, Arenado’s play this year opened the eyes of voters moving forward, because we demand Arenado to be taken seriously. Look for Arenado to keep up the production heading into the 2016 season. Congrats Nolan!