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Ozzie Smith he is not.
The Cardnials defense has gotten a lot of credit for that team being 14-1/2 games up. Brian over at Redbird Nation gives a pretty good assesment of that defense, which is definitely excellent overall. One thing caught my eye though,
Edgar Renteria -- well, he's won a couple Gold Gloves, but I've never seen what the hubbub was about. I think he's good to his left, and I know he's sure-handed, but I've never found him very impressive going to his right and/or in the hole, and his arm seems pretty middling. And I don't think he has the same rhythm on double plays that he shared with Fernando Vina. Win Shares agrees with me on this one -- it has Edgar 7th, just ahead of a couple guys with less playing time. There are plenty of reasons to re-sign Renteria in the off-season, but I hope defense isn't one of the primary ones.I have to agree with this, but I'm glad my limited observation is backed up by someone paying closer attention to the Cardinals than me.
Win Shares backs it up, but UZR also supports this, although I dont know how Renteria fared in individual years. ESPN's range factor has him ranked 11th in the NL in 2002, 10th in 2003, and 6th so far this year. He's very good, very sure-handed as Brian says, but certainly not the best. He won the Gold Glove the last two years, but the GG award is really nothing more than a popularity contest. Once you get known as a good defensive player nobody questions it, even after you start declining (see Derek Jeter). Conversely, once you get known as a bad defensive player, you are stuck with that stigmata forever (see Jose Valentin).
Renteria is certainly very good, but he's not the best. It wouldn't suprise me to see him win another Gold Glove, but some of the less heralded shortstops like Adam Everett, Jack Wilson, or Cesar Izturis really ought to win it.