It’s been 24 games with Brandon Crawford as a starter this year. He has more home runs than anyone on the Giants and setting a new career high in home runs in a season – five.
So who are we watching on TV and what happened to the real Brandon Crawford?
For one thing, he still looks like John Stamos. Check.
But “The Professor” is acting less like a timid rookie and more like a veteran showing the team how it’s done.
On top of the power numbers, he is hitting the ball with a .300 clip and playing outstanding defense. The great defense is something Giants fans have expected from the 26-year-old shortstop, but the hitting? Far from expected.
Crawford is on pace for more than 30 home runs and roughly 85 RBIs – a feat only one other Giant has achieved. That man is Rich Aurillia who had an insane 37 homer, 97 RBI and . 324 season in 2001 at the age of 29.
The most promising thing for me when I compare the two is that Aurillia hit just nine home runs and batted .266 when he was Crawford’s age.
AgeRich AurilliaBrandon Crawford
243 HR, 36 RBI, .239 AVG.3 HR, 21 RBI, .204 AVG. (66 games)
255 HR, 19 RBI, .275 AVG. (46 games)4 HR. 45 RBI, .248 AVG.
269 HR, 49 RBI, .266 AVG.5 HR, 13 RBI, .304 AVG (24 games)
2722 HR, 80 RBI, .281 AVG.-
2820 HR, 79 RBI, .271 AVG.-
2937 HR, 97 RBI, .324 AVG.-
The numbers aren’t exact, but they have potential to become very similar if Crawford keeps up his current pace.
The next best power seasons by a shortstop in franchise history include Juan Uribe‘s 24 homers in 2010 and Al Dark‘s 23 home runs back in 1953. Before that, there were none.
Power shortstops are a rare breed. Troy Tulowitzki, Jimmy Rollins and (the old) Derek Jeter are just a few of the names known to put up big numbers.
It’s hard to tell if Crawford’s name will join the elite group of players, but I sure is fun to watch him play this season.
Should you add him to your fantasy team? Probably not unless you are in a deep league and you are bone dry at the shortstop position. If he doesn’t hit home runs, he will play good defense and poke some hits around as well.