J.P. Crawford is the most recent recipient of the gold glove, taking home the honors for the first time. The question needs to be asked… Is it enough to make him the long term answer at shortstop?
Heading into the winter meetings in 2018, the Seattle Mariners decided to trade away Jean Segura for J.P Crawford. Crawford had entered 2017 as the number 54 prospect in all of baseball, a great fielder with a great arm, and a decent bat.
Throughout his minor league career, he had been a top-five pick, the top shortstop prospect, and the number two prospect in all of baseball.
Yet, his value was diminishing as he failed to produce to expectations throughout 2017 and 2018. Where others may have seen someone who couldn’t perform in professional baseball, Jerry Dipoto saw something else. A chance to trade away Segura before his contract extension even kicked in, in exchange for a prospect that could be had for a great price.
Sending away a 29-year-old shortstop who was involved in a midseason fight with his double-play teammate, that had possibly derailed the team’s stellar start, for a 23-year-old that was under control through 2024. I’m guessing that Jerry Dipoto would do this 100 out of 100 times if he had the opportunity.
The team now had a legit shortstop prospect set to fill long-empty shoes. At least by anyone that fans wanted filling them. A former top pick/prospect? Sign us up, and let’s see what the 23-year-old can do.
We’ve now seen 600+ plate appearances from Crawford in a Mariners uniform. The youngster is out of prospect status and will be 26 when the 2021 season starts. Is it a big enough sample to make the all-important decision?
Is J.P. Crawford the answer for the Seattle Mariners at shortstop?
Keep him… trade him… Let’s take a glimpse at each side of the argument for what to do with J.P. Crawford.