Pratto becomes first Naturals player to win a minor league Gold Glove Award


KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI – JULY 10: Nick Pratto #88 of the Kansas City Royals slides into home plate during an intrasquad scrimmage as part of summer workouts at Kauffman Stadium on July 10, 2020 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

SPRINGDALE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Minor League Baseball and Rawlings Sporting Goods announced the recipients of the 2021 Rawlings Gold Glove Award® for defensive excellence and Nick Pratto was selected for the award at first base, the first Naturals player to ever claim the honor.

Between Northwest Arkansas and Triple-A Omaha, Pratto recorded a .998 fielding percentage at first base, making just two errors in 879 total chances across 113 games. He recorded 813 putouts and 64 assists, while helping turn 76 double plays.

Pratto’s 955.2 innings at first base ranked as the second-most of any player in Minor League baseball at the position in 2021, while his total chances and putouts also ranked among the best at the position.

Among Double-A Central players, Pratto played the third-most innings at first base with the fewest errors among those with at least 400 innings at the position, tied for the best fielding percentage of players with 150 or more innings at first base.

While with the Naturals, Pratto did not make an error across his first 365 chances and first 46 games. After a stretch of nearly 400 errorless innings (396.2) to begin the season, the California native did not make another error for over 300 more, continuing the streak into his promotion to Triple-A.

Since the award was re-established in 2011, Pratto is the first Northwest Arkansas Naturals player to earn the honor. Only one Royals prospect had previously earned a Rawlings Gold Glove Award®, when Omaha Storm Chasers outfielder Derrick Robinson did so in 2012.

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