Look for Carl Crawford to put up the best numbers of his 10 season career in 2012. Since Crawford inked a contract with Boston, his performance has taken a noticeable dip. Carl Crawford led the American League in triples and stolen bases in four seasons with Tampa. His 9 year batting average with the Rays was .296 and an on-base percentage of .337. While playing in Tampa, Carl appeared in 4 All Star games, won a Silver Slugger Award and a Gold Glove. He was the 2009 All Star MVP, displaying his immense power and speed. His defensive game isn’t too shabby either. His range factor as a left fielder put him best in the league in 2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, and 2008.
Since his start in Boston, his batting average dropped to all-time career low of .255 with an on-base percentage of .289. The Red Sox manager Bobby Valentine is going to pay Crawford a little visit in Houston this off-season to discuss the issue. Bobby Valentine thinks it is all in Crawford’s stance at the plate. The club noticed that Crawford’s batting stance was just too wide last season. His failure to get on base closed down opportunities to steal some extra bags. No one suspects that Crawford’s power and speed has lessened. A simple tweak at the plate should get this slugger back on track. Boston is dedicated to Carl Crawford for some time. He isn’t eligible for free agency until 2018.
Crawford’s Texas high school coach bought a package allowing him to watch Boston Red Sox games regularly. Coach Gerald Garcia has even noticed his stance problem. Though Garcia hasn’t been in contact with Crawford, he is assured Valentine will help Crawford get back where he needs to be. Crawford is one of those guys who welcomes the extra help, and will do whatever it takes to be a great player again.
I am expecting to see Crawford in the 2012 All Star game. By the end of his second season in Boston, I think we will see some impressive numbers flowing out of Fenway. I am predicting him to explode as a Red Sox outfielder, earning some numbers like 15 home runs, 30 doubles, 10 triples, 95 RBIs, and a massive 50 stolen bases. I wouldn’t be surprised when he ends the regular season with a .300 batting average and some post-season action.