Before Monday’s victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers, the SF Giants removed one of their best players from the active roster. After suffering discomfort in the weekend series against the St. Louis Cardinals, an MRI of star shortstop Brandon Crawford revealed a mild oblique strain that forced the front office to place Crawford on the IL. They recalled corner bat Jason Vosler from Triple-A to take his place.
The SF Giants placed Brandon Crawford on the IL.
Crawford has been a steadily declining regular over the last few seasons. Entering the final season of his contract in 2021, many expected that downward trajectory to continue. Yet, while Crawford made franchise history this season, breaking the team record for games played at shortstop, the UCLA alumni have performed like he’s still in his prime. In 82 games, Crawford is hitting .282/.363/.546 (all of which would be career highs) with 18 home runs, a mark he’s only topped in a single season once before. His Gold Glove caliber defense has also looked as sharp as ever and helped Crawford receive a selection to this year’s All-Star game.
Vosler has appeared in 31 games for the Giants and received just 64 plate appearances. Primarily used as a pinch hitter and late-game substitute, Vosler has hit three homers and posted a .211/.297/.439 line in the bigs. On the other hand, he’s recorded a .272/.388/.515 triple-slash with 17 walks and 20 strikeouts for the River Cats.
However, Thairo Estrada will probably see the most significant increase in playing time in Crawford’s absence since he’s the only primary shortstop remaining on the active roster. Estrada has been one of the most valuable players in the minor leagues, spraying the ball around the field at Triple-A while eclipsing a 1.000 OPS. He’s been quite productive in a small sample for the Giants as well, hitting .325/.400/.425. A former top prospect with the New York Yankees, Estrada is a career .238/.297/.371 hitter in 156 big-league plate appearances.
The bombardment of injuries against the SF Giants continued this week, with star shortstop Brandon Crawford going to the 10-day injured list on Monday. Infielder Jason Vosler was recalled from Triple-A, and he, alongside players like Thairo Estrada and possibly Mauricio Dubon, will likely see plenty of opportunities in Crawford’s absence.