After winning his fifth consecutive American League Gold Glove Award on Tuesday, Derek Jeter may have been gypped out of his first National League version of the award.

Jeter not actually playing in the National League may have been a huge contributing factor in his not being honored. Then again, the Yankee captain not actually being a good defensive shortstop did not keep American League voters from handing him their award.

Though he has never fared well in advanced defensive statistics – typically ranking somewhere between below average and absolutely dreadful – he is now the proud owner of five Gold Glove awards and a fanatical group of Yankee fans who will swear that he is a great defensive shortstop.

I will be the first to admit, Jeter is a lot of things, including one of the best players of this era and a future first ballot Hall of Famer. He is a class act. And he is, in fact, one of the very few Yankees that I do not want to punch in the face quite as much. But he is not, and never was, the best defensive shortstop in the American League. He just isn’t.

Whether you love or hate defensive statistics or you could care less either way, the notion that Jeter is (or ever was) a top-five shortstop in the AL is simply absurd.

Alexei Ramirez, of the Chicago White Sox, ranks near the top in nearly every advanced defensive statistic.

But there is also JJ Hardy, Cesar Izturis, Elvis Andrus and nearly every other shortstop in the American League that deserves the award more than Jeter.

And yet, Jeter now has more Gold Gloves than every other shortstop in the history of baseball except for Ozzie Smith, Omar Vizquel, Luis Aparicio and Mark Belanger. Again, that is absurd.

Unfortunately, the Gold Glove has become nothing more than an advertisement for a product: Rawlings baseball gloves. There is a link to purchase a glove right on the announcement page. It was created by a sales manager of a company to sell their product, not to create a sacred hall of defensive metrics.

Guys like Ramirez and Andrus would not sell gloves as efficiently as Jeter, simply because they are not the captain of the New York Yankees.
But, as a baseball fan, it is an absolute disgrace that marketing plays such a huge role in the selection of a “prestigious” award.