Dodgers Formally Welcome Carl Crawford

Shortly after the Dodgers completed what is arguably the biggest trade in MLB history on August 25, they held a unique post-game on-field press conference with new additions Josh Beckett, Adrian Gonzalez and Nick Punto. Noticeably missing from this near-midnight (albeit creative) press conference was the fourth and final piece of what many say was nothing more than a $367 million salary dump by the dysfunctional Red Sox. That missing piece, of course, was outfielder Carl Crawford, who just two days earlier had undergone Tommy John surgery to repair his left (throwing) arm.

On Friday morning and on the heels of their disappointing “almost made it” 2012 season, the Dodgers finally got their opportunity to formally introduce Crawford to the media at a press conference held in the Stadium Club at Dodger Stadium.

Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti formally introduced Carl Crawford to the media at Friday morning’s press conference. (Photo credit – Ron Cervenka)

“I got so excited, coming to a team playing with other great players… Matt Kemp, I’ve known Andre Ethier for a while,” Crawford said to the gathered media about when he first learned of the trade. “From what I hear, this is a team that wants to really win a championship and it’s definitely built to do so. That’s my goal, to help this team win a championship,” he added. When asked if he’d like to join Matt Kemp and Dee Gordon in a little one-on-one basketball with Magic Johnson, he laughed and said “Ya, that’s something that I definitely want to do.”

Crawford made it clear that he is extremely happy to be a Dodger. (Photo credit – Jon SooHoo)

When asked how his rehab was going, Crawford said that he won’t be able to throw or swing a bat until January but expects to be ready by spring training. He added that he has been doing a lot of running to stay in shape.

“That’s my whole career, that’s my livelihood… my legs. I’ve got to go the extra mile to keep my legs up to par; I have to pay extra attention to my legs… that’s everything.”

Although some are skeptical (even critical) as to whether or not Crawford is worth the $120 million that the Dodgers will be paying him over the next five seasons, it is difficult to ignore his impressive .292 / .332 / .441 career triple slash numbers. More notably are his four All-Star appearances (including the 2009 ASG MVP Award), 2010 Gold Glove and Silver Slugger Awards, and his four AL Stolen Base titles (2003, 2004, 2006 and 2007). The 31-year-old Houston, TX native also tied a MLB record when he stole six bases in a game on May 3, 2009 against (go figure) the Boston Red Sox.

“Carl Crawford isn’t just a good signing, he’s a great signing,” said former MLB manager Kevin Kennedy. “I saw Carl play every day when I was with Tampa Bay (as a broadcaster) and I’m telling you, he is a superstar and Dodger fans are going to love him,” added Kennedy, a current talk show host on DodgerTalk and MLB on XM.

After Friday’s press conference, Crawford dropped in on Dodger fans attending the first of two Select-A-Seat events. Crawford is seen here with long-time LFP season ticket holder Robert Miranda. (Photo credit – Ron Cervenka)

For those still skeptical of Carl Crawford (which I definitely am not), here are some of his accomplishments over his 11-year MLB career:

  • American League All-Star (2004, 2006, 2009, 2010)
  • Gold Glove Award (2010)
  • Silver Slugger Award (2010)
  • Fielding Bible Award (2006, 2008, 2009)
  • American League Stolen Base Champion (2003, 2004, 2006, 2007)
  • American League Triples Champion (2004), (2005), (2006), (2010)
  • All-Star Game MVP (2009)
  • MLB modern-era, single-game, stolen-base record: 6 (May 3, 2009)
  • International League Rookie of the Year (2002)
  • Negro Leagues Baseball Museum “Cool Papa Bell Legacy Award” (2003)
  • Tampa Bay Chapter/BBWAA Devil Rays Most Valuable Player (2004, 2010)
  • Tampa Bay Chapter/BBWAA Devil Rays Most Outstanding Rookie (2002)
  • Rays single-season runs record: 110 (2010)
  • Rays single-season triples record: 19 (2004)
  • Rays single-season stolen base record: 60 (2009)
  • Rays’ all-time leader in at bats, plate appearances, RBIs, runs scored, hits, doubles, triples, strikeouts, stolen bases, and singles.
  • Named the Rays’ “Face of the Franchise” by ESPN
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5 Responses to “Dodgers Formally Welcome Carl Crawford”

  1. Bluenose Dodger says:

    Crawford is the secret to this trade. If he regains his form, a good trade. If he doesn’t, not a good trade.

    I don’t see him as a malcontent from the Red Sox. Never hear of him complaining. The only scary part is he is always smiling, like Andruw Jones does.

    • Ron Cervenka says:

      “…he is always smiling, like Andruw Jones…”

      No comparison. Carl’s smile is genuine – like Luis Cruz.

      • Bluenose Dodger says:

        I don’t know about Andruw’s smile in LA but with the Braves, who I saw a lot, there was nothing about it that was not genuine. I think if we could find my post when he became a Dodger, I made that comment about his smile. That would have been on Dodger Dogs.

  2. MFGRREP says:

    I look forward to seeing him in action, but I really hope that TGJ makes it as the 4th OF

  3. OldBrooklynFan says:

    This guy comes with some awful good credentials. The first time I really heard of him was when he was traded to the RedSox, before that I never paid much attention to his career.
    I hope he gets off to a better start than the others involved in the trade, right after he’s fully healthy.
    It might be tough with both him and Kemp coming out of surgery at the same time, but it’s good to know they’ll have a whole season to heal.

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