Rizzo, Heyward win NL Gold Glove Awards

Rizzo, Heyward win NL Gold Glove Awards

CHICAGO -- Right fielder Jason Heyward won his fourth Rawlings Gold Glove Award and third in a row, while first baseman Anthony Rizzo received his first for the Cubs. The defensive honors were announced on Tuesday night.

It's the first time the Cubs have had a Gold Glove winner since 2012, when second baseman Darwin Barney captured the award, and the first time since '05 that the team has had multiple winners. In '05, first baseman Derrek Lee and pitcher Greg Maddux were both honored.

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Major League managers and coaches, voting only within their league and unable to vote for players on their own teams, accounted for 75 percent of the selection process. The other 25 percent goes to the sabermetrics community.

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Heyward, who also won the award in 2012 as well as '14 and '15, posted a .991 fielding percentage and a .985 Ultimate Zone Rating, which led all National League right fielders. He may not have contributed offensively as much as Cubs fans would have liked, but Heyward was a key piece of the Cubs' defense, and manager Joe Maddon often said he felt better having the 27-year-old in the outfield.

Heyward is the third outfielder in Cubs history to earn the award, joining two-time winner Andre Dawson (1987 and '88) and Bob Dernier in '84. Heyward is the youngest outfielder to earn the award in franchise history.

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Rizzo, who jumped onto the wall along the first-base line to catch a foul ball this year, ranked third among NL first basemen in Ultimate Zone Rating (.888) and finished with a .996 fielding percentage, committing six errors in 154 games.

The 27-year-old credited his father, John, with helping him develop quick hands by chipping golf balls to him in the living room when he was growing up. Cubs coach Franklin Font and Rizzo have a daily routine at first base that helps the big leaguer fine-tune his game.

"It's amazing -- it means a lot," said Rizzo, who was interviewed during the ESPN broadcast on Tuesday night.

Rizzo is only the third first baseman in franchise history to earn this award, joining four-time winner Mark Grace (1992, '93, '95, '96) and two-time winner Lee (2005 and '07). He is also the youngest first baseman to win the award in Cubs history.

Rizzo and Heyward were two of the Cubs' four Gold Glove nominees. Addison Russell was a finalist but lost to Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford. Pitcher Jake Arrieta lost to the D-backs' Zack Greinke. Russell and Arrieta were first-time nominees.

The Cubs have two position players honored in the same year for the first time since 1988, when Dawson and second baseman Ryne Sandberg earned the Gold Glove Award.

The Cubs were also one of three teams to have multiple Gold Glove winners, joining the Giants and the Rangers.

Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.