Giants sign Crawford to six-year deal
Contract is worth $75 million and locks up shortstop through 2021 season
SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford won a Gold Glove Award and a Silver Slugger Award last week. That left Crawford without more trophies to collect, but he still had a chance to pick up plenty of gold and silver.
That happened Tuesday, when the Giants announced an agreement with Crawford on a six-year, $75 million contract. The deal, which extends through the 2021 season, includes a full no-trade clause -- something that Crawford, who grew up rooting for the Giants, surely can appreciate.
"Growing up a Giants fan, I thought it was a dream come true just to get drafted by this organization," Crawford said at a news conference on Wednesday. "Then to have an opportunity to play in the big leagues and win a couple World Series, I didn't think it could get much better. That made the decision pretty easy to stay another six years. I don't think there's anywhere else I'd rather play."
The accord relieved the Giants of the burden of negotiating with Crawford through his final two arbitration-eligible seasons and covers four years of his potential free agency. A source familiar with the negotiations said that Crawford will receive a $1.2 million signing bonus, $5.8 million next year, $8 million in 2017 and $15 million annually in the contract's final four years.
The significance of the pact, which the Giants and Crawford's agents began discussing early this year before tabling talks during the season, is obvious.
"It's always a good day when you sign your shortstop who just made the All-Star team, got a Gold Glove and the Silver Slugger," manager Bruce Bochy said. "It's nice to have that sense of comfort that we have a guy like Brandon, who's so gifted.
"The guy's a winner. He prepares like a winner, he performs like a winner. He's a guy that leads by example."
Catcher Buster Posey is the only other Giant signed through 2021. Crawford will be 34 years old when he enters the final year of his contract, young enough to remain spry and nimble defensively.
A regular on the Giants' 2012 and '14 World Series-winning clubs, Crawford had a breakout '15. He made his first National League All-Star team en route to finishing with a .256 batting average, 21 home runs, 84 RBIs and a .782 OPS. All were career highs.
Crawford, whom San Francisco selected in the fourth round of the 2008 Draft out of UCLA, became the first Giants player to win the Gold Glove Award and Silver Slugger Award in the same year since Barry Bonds did so in 1997. Crawford's also the Giants' first Gold Glove Award winner since shortstop Omar Vizquel in 2006 and the first Giants shortstop to earn a Silver Slugger since Aurilia in 2001.
The soft-spoken Crawford has announced his presence loudly in the postseason. In Game 4 of the 2012 World Series, he executed a 10th-inning sacrifice bunt to move Ryan Theriot to second base and set up Marco Scutaro's go-ahead single in San Francisco's clincher. Two years later, Crawford's fourth-inning grand slam silenced a rambunctious pro-Pirates crowd at PNC Park and paced San Francisco to an 8-0 triumph in the NL Wild Card Game.