Crawford’s defensive brilliance shines again

Thursday, May 16

DENVER — Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford displayed his Gold Glove-level skills again Thursday, making a highly difficult play on Colorado’s Charlie Blackmon to record a sixth-inning out during the Giants’ 8-6 victory over the Rockies.

Blackmon hit a low-trajectory bloop to Crawford that prompted him to break in for the ball. Suddenly he stopped and played the ball on a hop — though he had to reach for it with his bare right hand to do so. The ball very nearly skipped past him for a base hit.

Crawford grasped the ball smartly and threw out Blackmon, who has decent speed, at first base.

Asked to rank that play alongside his other examples of defensive artistry, Crawford said in his understated fashion, “It’s up there.”

He also admitted that the ball fooled him somewhat. “Off the bat I was going to catch it. I thought I was going to have time to get under it and catch it. But by the time I ‘broke down,’ [terminology for slowing up slightly to make a play -- it can be baseball, football or basketball] I had to react to it. With that spin, it was kind of typical for it to bounce off to the right.”

*****

One more Crawford tidbit, this on the Giants’ 10-game winning streak against the Rockies:
“It’s kind of weird, because they’re a good team. They have good arms and a lot of good bats, obviously. To win 10 straight on them is a pretty good accomplishment for our team.”

– Chris Haft

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