Barney's defense at a Gold Glove-caliber level

Barney's defense at a Gold Glove-caliber level

CHICAGO -- Cubs manager Dale Sveum doesn't like taking Darwin Barney out of the lineup. The second baseman's defense is too good.

"His defense has been incredible all season long," Sveum said of Barney, who ranks fourth among National League second basemen in double plays and has committed one error in 95 games.

Barney is having a Gold Glove-caliber season.

"I'd hate to think anybody has played better second base than he has," Sveum said. "There's no question about [winning a] Gold Glove the way he's played. He's been as good as I've seen for 100 games. People just don't realize the other things he brings with the constant turning of the double play. There aren't too many second basemen who go for the popups and catch the popups that he does either.

"There's a lot of things that go [unnoticed], like knowing where to play every hitter and paying attention to details. It's been incredible."

Entering Saturday, Barney leads NL second basemen in putouts with 190; the Pirates' Neal Walker is next at 182, followed by the D-backs' Aaron Hill with 162.