Yolmer Sanchez is a Gold Glover.
The White Sox second baseman was awarded a Gold Glove on Sunday night, making him the first South Side position player to win one since Robin Ventura way back in 1998. He beat out finalists Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros and D.J. LeMahieu of the New York Yankees to take home the honor.
Sanchez was perhaps the favorite to win the fielding honor among American League second basemen after a sensational defensive season that saw him lead the group with 11 Defensive Runs Saved (DRS). Only Kolten Wong of the St. Louis Cardinals was better in that category among baseball’s second basemen.
Sanchez spoke with Our Chuck Garfien in September and told him how much it would mean to win a Gold Glove.
“Everything,” he said. “I grew up watching (former White Sox shortstop) Omar Vizquel. He’s one of my role models. I always wanted to win at least one Gold Glove, because I want to follow his example because he’s from Venezuela.
“I’ve believed in my defense since Day 1. That’s why I use Rawlings, because in the future I want to win a Gold Glove.”
Well, mission accomplished.
Of course, as terrific as Sanchez has been defensively for the White Sox, he might soon be looking for a job elsewhere. In part because of his glove work, he’s due for a raise via the arbitration process, one that might price him off the White Sox roster.
With top-ranked infield prospect Nick Madrigal nearing his big league debut, the light-hitting Sanchez might be relegated to reserve status. And while the White Sox love him for his defense and his presence in the clubhouse, the projected $6.2 million might be too much to pay for a bench guy, especially with Rick Hahn’s front office working to fill several holes this offseason and when the similarly versatile Leury Garcia wouldn’t be as expensive.
But those decisions are to come. Right now, the White Sox can celebrate Sanchez being honored for his defensive excellence.
Additionally, Lucas Giolito, who was a finalist for the Gold Glove as a pitcher, did not win the award, losing out to Mike Leake.Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the White Sox easily on your device.