For his decade-plus in the Major Leagues, SF Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford has shown off a defensive ability unmatched by the vast majority of shortstops in baseball history; with four career Gold Glove awards - the most-recent coming in his resurgent 2021 campaign - Crawford is tied for the seventh-most career Gold Glove wins by a shortstop since the award originated in 1957.
In the eyes of a teammate behind whom he made plays last season (and will in 2022), however, Crawford still falls short of a contemporary.
Late on April 4, Giants left-handed starting pitcher Alex Wood quote-tweeted an agreement to the statement, "Andrelton Simmons is the best to ever do it at SS."
Simmons and Crawford are tied with four Gold Gloves
Simmons, who played with Wood on the Atlanta Braves in 2013-14 and part of 2015, has also won four Gold Gloves. He beat out Crawford for the National League award those two years before the Giants' star claimed it in 2015 and started a streak of three consecutive wins. Simmons was traded to the Los Angeles Angels before the 2016 season and was the American League's winner in 2017-18.
The Twitter conversation began when the account @CodifyBaseball - a verified account of a business that helps pitchers (including Giants hurlers Logan Webb, Tyler Beede and Carlos Rodon, based on its tweets and header picture) prepare personalized game plans and tweets about random baseball events - tweeted asking for examples of the most athletic baseball plays ever.
Fantasy baseball writer Nate Miller replied with the tweet that Wood concurred with. Challenged by a reply mentioning Ozzie Smith - the Hall of Famer with a shortstop-record 13 Gold Gloves in his 19-year career with the San Diego Padres and St. Louis Cardinals - Miller responded, "That's who I'm thinking of with 'don't say this lightly'. Ozzie was incredible, but Simmons has the edge imo. It's certainly debatable."
For his part, it didn't appear Crawford had a reply to his teammate's statement, even though plenty of fans in the replies to Wood mentioned him or thought it might start a playful back-and-forth.