Manny Machado leads all big leaguers in ESPN's Web Gems

ESPN’s Baseball Tonight tallied up its 2013 Web Gems – the best featured defensive plays each night – and Orioles third baseman Manny Machado is tops among all major leaguers with 18 through Thursday’s games.

The next closest is Arizona outfielder Gerardo Parra with 12. According to ESPN, this could be the largest gap from the top Web Gemmer to second place since 2009, when Washington third baseman Ryan Zimmerman had 19 and the runner-up was Arizona infielder Mark Reynolds with 13. Yes, that Reynolds, the former Oriole who was defensively challenged at third in Baltimore but good at first.

Machado also had seven Web Gems in 51 games last year and has more since 2012 than any other major leaguer, despite not getting the call to the big leagues until last August.

“He's having as good a year at third base as I've ever seen a player have,” manager Buck Showalter said of Machado. “I know how the Gold Glove stuff goes, but if he doesn't get it, then we'll give him one.”

When Baseball Tonight ranked its first half Web Gems this year, Machado’s throw beyond the coach’s box at Yankee Stadium to nab Luis Cruz at first in June was No. 1.

No other Oriole has more than seven this season, according to ESPN. But the club was second overall with 39, behind only the Kansas City Royals, who have 44.

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