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San Francisco Giants: Middle Infield Preview For 2019

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - OCTOBER 11: Brandon Crawford #35 and Joe Panik #12 of the San Francisco Giants stand on the field during a pitching change in the ninth inning of Game Four of their National League Division Series at AT&T Park on October 11, 2016 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - OCTOBER 11: Brandon Crawford #35 and Joe Panik #12 of the San Francisco Giants stand on the field during a pitching change in the ninth inning of Game Four of their National League Division Series at AT&T Park on October 11, 2016 in San Francisco, California. (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images) /
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San Francisco Giants
SCOTTSDALE, AZ – FEBRUARY 21: Brandon Crawford #35 of the San Francisco Giants poses during the Giants Photo Day on February 21, 2019 in Scottsdale, Arizona. (Photo by Jamie Schwaberow/Getty Images) /

The Incumbents

Brandon Crawford

Brandon Crawford started the 2018 season on fire but tapered off during the second half of the season. In the second half, Crawford dealt with injuries that slowed him. Crawford ended the season batting .254 with 14 home runs and 54 RBIs; He also managed to post his seventh two-WAR season.

Crawford fielding metric declined last season, but that could have neem to all the nagging injuries he had and also is OPS has dropped each off the last three season as well.

In 2019 i look for Crawford to come in with something to prove. I would like to see him get his average up to at least the .280s and play great defense to get his gold glove back. If Crawford can do these things, it will help the Giants in a big way.

Joe Panik

Joe Panik is coming off a down year; he hit .254 with just four home runs last season. He missed a lot of games due to injury, but when healthy, Panik has an elite bat to ball skills only has struck out 9 percent of the time in five MLB seasons. It is vital that Panik can stay healthy for the Giants, they need him to produce.

Panik will need to play close to his 2015 All-star form in the 2019 season. He makes good contact so the average should come up this year. The critical thing is, Panik, needs to hit left-handed pitching better

Alen Hanson

Alen Hanson was a pleasant surprise last season for the Giants. He can play many different positions, a classic utility guy. Hanson posted .781 OPS again-right-handed pitching with eight home runs. Last season Hanson started hot but after July 1 he cooled off, Hanson hit .235/.250/.346  from July on. He only walked three times in 187 during that stretch also.

In 2019 i would see Hanson be more patient at the plate and bring his average up. I can see him hitting in the .270s or maybe higher. He will be a crucial component for the Giants because he can play many different positions.

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