Projecting the 2022 SF Giants lineup
Infielders (6) - Brandon Belt, Tommy La Stella, Brandon Crawford, Evan Longoria, Wilmer Flores, and Thairo Estrada.
The Giants will return nearly the entire infield contingent from the 2021 season with the exception of Donovan Solano. They could use a right-handed-hitting middle infielder like Solano, but the front office seems motivated to get Thairo Estrada more at-bats after a strong finish to the season.
There is very little guesswork to the infield contingent as most of the players are established veterans. That said, there are some fair questions marks regarding the health of Tommy La Stella, Brandon Belt, and Evan Longoria.
La Stella underwent left Achilles surgery following the conclusion of the 2021 season with an estimated recovery time of four months. That would make him available right at the beginning of spring training in a normal offseason.
Longoria seems to experience freak injuries that derail his season and the front office, undoubtedly, will look at ways to manage the veteran third baseman's workload as he enters his age-36 season. On the other hand, Belt has frequently been bitten by the injury bug. Some are freakish in nature, whereas others are more of the nagging variety.
The Giants will want to target a left-handed-hitting utility infielder in case La Stella has any setbacks and to give Longoria extra rest. Jason Vosler could certainly fill that role, but his bat will need to show growth next year.
Wilmer Flores could see time all around the field, but he also saw plenty of time as the team's designated hitter (DH) in the 2020 season. With the DH set to return next year, that is likely a role that he will fulfill.
Lastly, there is Brandon Crawford. He had a career year at the plate and signed a two-year extension to remain with the club. He has quietly been one of the more durable players over the last decade while playing at one of the more demanding positions on the field.