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4 Royals up for Gold Glove Award; Cain left out

Hosmer, Escobar, Gordon and Perez finalists for top defensive prize

NEW YORK -- Four Royals are finalists for Rawlings American League Gold Glove Awards, but the talk in the clubhouse a day before Game 3 of the World Series was about who didn't become a finalist.

Past winners Eric Hosmer (first base), Alcides Escobar (shortstop), Alex Gordon (left field) and Salvador Perez (catcher) were named finalists again this year.

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But for the second straight season, standout center fielder Lorenzo Cain was somehow left out. Last year, he was not a finalist because he didn't play enough innings in center to qualify. He qualified this year, but once again there will be no Gold for Cain.

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"I'm very surprised about that," Escobar said. "He plays hard and gets to everything."

"Crazy," said third baseman Mike Moustakas, when told Cain wasn't a finalist.

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Royals manager Ned Yost added: "I don't know how he can't be. What's the finalists, top three, something like that? Yeah, that's hard for me to believe he's not in the top three."

The center fielders nominated as finalists are Kevin Kiermaier (Rays), Kevin Pillar (Blue Jays) and Mike Trout (Angels). Kiermaier, who had an AL-best 42 Defensive Runs Saved (DRS) according to Fangraphs, is likely the favorite. Pillar was third with 14 DRS, while Trout was sixth with five. Cain was second, with 18.

By another measure -- Ultimate Zone Rating -- Kiermaier was again the AL leader at 40.7, while Cain was second at 14.3 and Pillar third at 14.0. Trout posted a 0.3 UZR.

So the metrics indicate that Kiermaier should be the runaway winner, but they also say Cain should have been a finalist.

"If they don't pick me, they don't pick me," Cain said. "Hopefully we can win a World Series ring and that would trump the Gold Glove anyway."

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Gordon already has four Gold Gloves, while Hosmer and Perez each have two. Escobar was a finalist last year.

The winners will be announced Nov. 10.

Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for Follow him on Twitter at @FlannyMLB.
Read More: Kansas City Royals, Lorenzo Cain, Eric Hosmer, Alcides Escobar, Alex Gordon, Salvador Perez