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Rendon, Taylor seeking first Gold Glove Award

MLB.com @JamalCollier

WASHINGTON -- Two standouts from the Nationals 2017 defense are being recognized for their excellence in the field this season. Third baseman Anthony Rendon and center fielder Michael A. Taylor were both named finalists for the 2017 Rawlings Gold Glove awards on Thursday.

Rendon, 27, is a finalist for the second consecutive season as he continues to earn standing among the National League's best at third base after a career year. Armed with the chance to play full time for an entire season, Taylor is a finalist in center field for the NL for the first time in his career.

WASHINGTON -- Two standouts from the Nationals 2017 defense are being recognized for their excellence in the field this season. Third baseman Anthony Rendon and center fielder Michael A. Taylor were both named finalists for the 2017 Rawlings Gold Glove awards on Thursday.

Rendon, 27, is a finalist for the second consecutive season as he continues to earn standing among the National League's best at third base after a career year. Armed with the chance to play full time for an entire season, Taylor is a finalist in center field for the NL for the first time in his career.

Past Gold Glove Award winners: American League | National League

They both face stiff competition to win the award. Rendon is joined by Nolan Arenado of the Rockies and David Freese of the Pirates as finalists, while Taylor will compete against Billy Hamilton of the Reds and Ender Inciarte of the Braves. The winners for each award will be unveiled Nov. 7 at 9 p.m. ET on ESPN.

Video: Must C Catch: Rendon's diving grab in the stands

Rendon was spectacular once again at the hot corner as he put together a season that will earn him votes for the NL Most Valuable Player award. He accumulated a career high 6.9 Wins Above Replacement in no small part because of his ability with the glove. Rendon had the most range among NL third basemen this year with a 13.6 Ultimate Zone Rating, and his seven defensive runs saved were the third most in the NL behind Arenado (20) and Jedd Gyorko (16).

To win his first Glove Glove award, Rendon would have to unseat Arenado, who has won the award for four consecutive seasons at third base.

Video: WSH@ATL: Statcast™ looks at Taylor's fantastic catch

Taylor, 26, routinely flashed his range in center field in his first season as a starter, after taking over in center for the injured Adam Eaton at the end of April. Combined with a career year at the plate, Taylor posted a 3.1 WAR, largely boosted by his defense. He led NL center fielders with a UZR of 10.1 and tied Hamilton for the NL lead at that position with 9 DRS. Taylor was also credited with eight outfield assists, and only Hamilton had more from center field.

Hamilton stacks up as Taylor's strongest competitor statistically, but Inciarte won the award last season and has his own reputation as a highlight-reel defender. 

Cast your vote for Best Defensive Player, more in 2017 Esurance MLB Awards

This year's Gold Glove Awards represent just one way the game's top performers will be recognized. Voting is underway now for the Esurance MLB Awards, which annually honor MLB's greatest achievements as part of an industry-wide balloting process. MLB Awards season will culminate on Nov. 17, when winners are announced live on MLB Network and MLB.com starting at 8 p.m. ET.

Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier.

Washington Nationals, Anthony Rendon, Michael A. Taylor