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Jacob Stallings, Ke’Bryan Hayes recipients of 2021 Fielding Bible Awards

Stallings and Hayes drastically improved the Pirates defense this past season

Atlanta Braves v Pittsburgh Pirates
Jacob Stallings and Ke’Bryan Hayes celebrate Stallings’ three-run home run against the Atlanta Braves on July 7, 2021
Photo by Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

It’s the beginning of award season throughout Major League baseball as a new World Series winner will be crowned next week and the sport reflects on its bounce-back from a 60-game slate in 2020.

One of the first awards has already been crowded by SIS-Baseball, awarding the top defensive players in baseball throughout the league, and the Pittsburgh Pirates are one of the most well-represented of any club.

Catcher Jacob Stallings and Ke’Bryan Hayes were each named to the team for the first time, joining a highly regarded group of only 10 total players selected.

Hayes and Stallings join second baseman Whit Merrifield and center fielder Michael A. Taylor of the Royals as the only two teams with multiple representatives.

Stallings continues to become one of the best defensive catchers in the game and improve his pitch framing every season.

The 31-year-old led all catchers in both defensive runs saved and pitch block rate, also being named a finalist for the 2021 Rawlings Gold Glove.

Hayes has been an electrifying defender at third base since his arrival in Pittsburgh late last season, showcasing dazzling picks and range worthy of receiving his award.

In his first full season, Hayes led all players at his position in defensive runs saved, and knocked off Nolan Arenado and Matt Chapman from either recording the award for the first time in six years.

He also missed time during the season due to injuries, a rewarding achievement for the 24-year-old with Gold Gloves in his future, despite not being a finalist this season.

Hayes is under team control for another five seasons and Stallings three, providing the Pirates with defensive stability for years to come.

The Pirates drastically improved defensively in 2021 and will need to continue on an upward trajectory to compensate for a lack of offense the past few seasons, and the further development of young hitters fresh to the big league and finding their footing.

The complete list of winners:

C- Jacob Stallings

1B- Paul Goldschmidt

2B- Whit Merrifield

SS- Carlos Correa

3B- Ke’Bryan Hayes

LF- Tyler O’Neill

CF- Michael A. Taylor

RF- Aaron Judge

P- Dallas Keuchel

Utility/Multi-Position- Kike Hernandez