I think we all expect Brandon Crawford to struggle with hitting. I know that I’ve been pretty pessimistic on Crawford’s abilities on offense. But I think something that gets lost in the Crawford-Theriot discussion is how strong Crawford should be on defense at his position. On the other side of things, Theriot is a second baseman posing as a shortstop. He posses neither the range nor throwing arm to play the position at even a part-time basis.
Crawford might never hit, but chances are that Theriot isn’t going to revert back to being an acceptable shortstop this season. Overall, they probably aren’t that far apart as players, but gun-to-my-head, I’ll probably go with the guy that has the better defense, and at this point, that’s Brandon Crawford by miles. I’m not opposed to the Giants easing Crawford in by sitting him against LHP on occasion, but I’ll be gritting my teeth when Theriot is flopping around in the field on balls that he can’t get to.
Suggested reading: Does Brandon Crawford’s bat outweigh his defense?