Daily Dodger in Review: The mixed season of Carl Crawford
CARL CRAWFORD, 32, outfielder
Final 2013 stats: .283 batting average, 30 doubles, six homers, 31 RBI, 62 runs, 15 stolen bases in 19 attempts, .329 on-base and .407 slugging percentages in 469 plate appearances.
Contract status: Under contract of four more seasons at $86 million.
The good: Had a very solid start, hitting .301 with five homers, 12 doubles and 32 runs in his first two months. For a guy who would prefer not to bat leadoff, performed it well, hitting .304 batting first.
With two outs and runners in scoring position, he batted .321. He hit. 308 against left-handers. Had a strong postseason, hitting .310 with four homers.
The bad: Hit only .210 against left-handers. Wasn’t quite the same player in the regular season after missing a month with a strained left hamstring. Hit .270/.307/.361 after returning July 5. After hitting five home runs in the team’s first 29 games, hit only one more the rest of the regular season.
What’s next: At this point, he’ll be one of four outfielders competing for playing time next season.
The take: It was something of a mixed season for Crawford. Considering he was coming off another surgery and some less than favorable reviews in Boston, the Dodgers had to be more than pleased with his first two months of the season.
After he came back from his hamstring injury – which should be noted, created the opening for Yasiel Puig to be called up – he was OK, though nothing particularly special again until the playoffs.
Still, he gave the Dodgers a decent leadoff hitter, and if he’ll never be the 50-plus base stealer again, generally isn’t far removed from his prime.
If all four outfielders return, however, either he or Andre Ethier (who also struggles hitting left-handers) figure to sit against left-handed pitchers next season. And he does make $21 million a year.
As a fielder, he alternated between looking fairly special to very awkward. Despite the naysayers from Beantown, he was never a problem in the clubhouse. He seemed genuinely happy to be here and getting a fresh start.
It may be difficult to count on a certain production from Crawford, but he gave the Dodgers reason to feel hopeful with how he can still perform when healthy.
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