With his first Gold Glove in hand, St. Louis Cardinals’ center fielder Harrison Bader should be looking to snag more hardware in 2022.
Harrison Bader is coming off of his first Gold-Glove-winning season with the St. Louis Cardinals. Not only did Bader win his first Gold Glove in 2021, but he also set career-highs in numerous hitting categories. He finished with the best batting average, on-base percentage, OPS, home run, and RBI numbers of his career.
Entering his fifth season with the Cardinals, Bader should remain as the starting center fielder. The main goal for Bader’s 2022 campaign should be to retain the Gold Glove at his position. He committed only three errors in 296 total chances and had a tremendous .990 fielding percentage in 2021.
If he can repeat that level of excellence, there should be no doubt that he will add a second Gold Glove to his collection. If the defense slips slightly, there are still plenty of areas he can improve on the offensive end to help the Cards.
While he is coming off career-highs in most hitting categories, Bader only played in 103 games in 2021. His numbers could absolutely increase in 2022 with more games played. If he reaches the 120-to-130 mark, he could destroy last year’s records.
Unfortunately, the regular season looks like it will not consist of the usual 162-game schedule, which will significantly hurt Bader’s chances of improving his offensive game. Thankfully, the shortened schedule does not really damage his chances at winning a second Gold Glove. Regardless of how many games are played in a season, the best defenders usually make themselves known.
With the best year of his career behind him, Bader moves into 2022 with an air of recognition and hardware that he has never had before. This could lead to another career-defining season for the speedy center fielder.