J.P. Crawford

John Paul Crawford

Height: 6'2"    Weight: 199 lbs.

Bats/Throws: Left / Right

Born: 01/11/1995 in Long Beach, California

Offseason home: Peoria, Arizona

Nickname: Crawdaddy

Family: Wife Kathleen

MLB Debut: 09/05/2017

Acquired: In trade from the Philadelphia Phillies, with Carlos Santana, for Jean Segura, James Pazos, and Juan Nicasio (12/03/2018)

Free Agent after: 2026 season

Awards: AL Gold Glove (2020)

Twitter handle: @jp_crawford

Judging by the number of jerseys seen with his name and number 3 on them when attending games at TMP, it seems J.P. has become the new Most Favored Mariner. And why not? Building on his great 2021 season, the Seattle shortstop is once again among the Mariners' best hitters. At this writing he ranks 11th in the American League in on-base percentage and has completely overcome his prior issues hitting at home. Over the first 20 home contests of the season, J.P. has a line of .308/.447/.477 at TMP, a stark improvement from his career mark prior to ’22 (.226/.305/.326). The split that isn't trending in his favor is lefty/righty—after bringing that split up to about equal last season, his numbers vs. southpaws are way down again (.341 vs. RHP, .164 vs. LHP). Hopefully that decline isn't because of his shift to the middle of the lineup; typically a 3-4-5 batter is expected to provide a bit of power, but that isn't historically J.P.'s forte and it'd be a shame if he was trying to muscle up against his strengths because of his place in the order.

The team leader in the clubhouse, J.P. maintains his gentle demeanor while still displaying a formidable competitive nature that Seattle fans love to see in the field. Crawford traces that back to his youth. “My dad and my older sister used to beat me at everything and [showed] me no mercy,” he said. “Playing basketball in the backyard, kickball, even in the batting cages. They would beat me at everything and it would make me like legitimately mad, and I think that's where my competitiveness comes from.”

TH, 6/6/22


Prior notes

J.P. had his best year so far in 2021, growing as a hitter as well as turning in stellar defensive work. He was snubbed for the All-Star team, but deserved to go after a fantastic month of June that saw him post a .352/.400/.528 line; "Crawdaddy" also had a monster September as the M's fought to stay in the playoff hunt, and when the club needed a big hit Crawford generally stepped up. With runners in scoring position J.P. delivered to the tune of .298/.373/.421 (better with 2 outs and RISP: .344/.444/.492); high-leverage situations, he hit .348/.418/.500. For the first time, he hit left-handers as well as righties, and he was terrific against the AL West (.297/.359/.433). What does he do for an encore? Well, we would like to see him hit at home. Over his career, his OBP at TMP is under .300 (a slightly better .316 last year) while he does his damage on the road.

Even if he hits a buck-fifty at home, though, he's a must-play for his glove. Having won one Gold Glove award (2020), he's gunning for a second after finishing second to Carlos Correa last year. He's also rather organically become a leader on a young team, setting the example with hard effort on the field and sage advice off the field. "He's the guy we look up to," said fellow infielder Dylan Moore. "He brings a charisma and swagger to this team that is hugely important. It brings out some confidence in other players." And how does J.P. feel about being the guy others look up to? "Knowing guys want to come up to me and ask [my advice] ... I want to be that guy," he says. "I'm ready to lead."

On Opening Day it was announced that J.P. had signed a contract extension that will keep him in Seattle through at least 2026. "I love Seattle," Crawford said. "I've loved it ever since I put on that jersey for the first time." Mariner GM Jerry Dipoto made J.P. a prime target when the M's started their rebuild project in 2018 and wrestled him away from the Phillies. "Being traded was the best thing that ever happened to me," Crawford said. Worked out pretty well for Seattle baseball fans, too.

TH, 4/8/22