Sunday, March 26, 2023

Jeremy Pena Makes MLB Shortstop History

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(Photo by Carmen Mandato/Getty Images)


Philadelphia Phillies catcher J.T. Realmuto won his second career Gold Glove on Tuesday.

He is not the only player currently in the World Series recognized by his defense, though.

Houston Astros shortstop Jeremy Pena was met with similar news today, just ahead of Game 3 of the Fall Classic.

In the process, he is making incredible MLB history.

“The first rookie shortstop EVER to win a Gold Glove,” the Astros tweeted on Tuesday afternoon, with a picture of Pena doing what he does best: fielding and smiling.

The 25-year-old rookie had sky-high expectations before the season, as people wanted him to be Carlos Correa.

Correa left Houston and signed a free agent contract to play with the Minnesota Twins.

But Pena should not be another player: he should be the best version of himself out there.

The offense was inconsistent: he followed a strong first half with a mediocre performance after the break, at least with the bat.


An All-Around Future Star

When all was said and done, he slashed .253/.289/.426 with a 102 wRC+ and a .715 OPS.

That, however, includes 22 home runs and 11 stolen bases.

The best attribute about Pena’s game, however, is his defense.

It’s nice to see it being recognized among the greats.

In 1,165 innings, he posted 15 Defensive Runs Saved (DRS) and 7 OAA (Outs Above Average), the two most important and widely used defensive metrics available.

Oh, and his bat woke up in the postseason, too: he has three home runs, nine RBI, and a .921 OPS so far, earning ALCS MVP honors in the process.

In Pena, the Astros have an elite defender and an improving bat with some unlocked potential.

That’s not bad from a rookie.

Not bad at all.



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