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Carl Crawford 2011 Projection


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#1 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 26 March 2011 - 12:58 AM

Our new 29 yo LF'er comes to town with the following resume after a 2010 season which was his career best. Since he is in his peak years and will be hitting in a good hitters park in a tough lineup, there is an expectation he will put up better numbers than last year.

2010- 307/356/495/851, 19 HR, 47 SB

3 yr offensive numbers 297/349/454/803 17 HR/162 games, w/ 52 SB/162 games,

3 yr Aggregate Defensive Runs per FG of 15.6 avg

3 yr WAR (FG) 5.0 avg (6.9 in 2010)

3 yr WARP - 4.7 avg (6.4 in 2010)

Here are what the experts are projecting for 2011:

Bill James, 311/360/472/832 14 HR, 42 SB
Marcels, 292/345/446/791, 14 HR, 40 SB
Pecota, 290/341/444/785, 16 HR, 44 SB
Fans88 307/360/476/836, 17 HR, 49 SB
Zips 312/359/491/850, 15 HR, 44 SB

Fans 88 WAR -5.6 (FG)
Pecotas WARP - 3.3

Pecota and Marcels projections have me scratching my head, but here are CC's hit charts from 2010 which seem to suggest Fenway may not be kind to him unless he changes his approach.

http://mlb.mlb.com/s...8307&statType=1

Fenway is probably not the best place to improve on his defensive stats although he may get more assists. His power seems more to RF/CF which could hurt his HR production, but this may be offset by more triples. Fenway may also take away a few singles as LF'ers can play in and get to some of his LD singles. This may be offset by more singles going for doubles. The turf in Tropicana may have got him a few more GB singles than he will get at Fenway.

One other piece of information is that I heard the Rays announcers saying they were very surprised to see how much weight/muscle Crawford had gained in the offseason. They thought this might help his power numbers, but wondered how it would impact his running game. Not sure how much weight he had gained but I had not heard anybody else comment on this, but one would have to imagine the Rays announcers are better positioned to make such a comparison. That said, he still looks fast to me and I have seen no evidence of an increase in power, but it's only ST.

My own expectations are that he should match or exceed his production from 2010 since the better lineup and hitting background in Fenway should help, and he may still be developing/improving. He won't have as big an adjustment like JD had in 2007 or like A-Gon will have this year since he is already familiar with the AL and AL East pitchers. He may have an issue with the fish bowl atmosphere in Boston, especially if he gets off to a slow start, but he should be able to get past that.

What say ye?.

Edited by Sampo Gida, 26 March 2011 - 01:05 AM.


#2 Trotsky

  • 773 posts

Posted 26 March 2011 - 09:01 AM

Sounds about right to me. I'm hoping for something a little higher in the OPS than Fans or Zips but expecting something closer to Bill James..... which is fine. But does his drop in defensive production (due to the Monster) make it worth that contract? A RF'er in Fenway putting up those offensive stats would be fine if he had Crawford's defensive skills, I just wanted more power out of my LF'er here- something north of .500 in the SLG dept. I guess I also wonder if his horizontal range will allow Jacoby to focus more on his vertical range (which seemed his problem in '09)

#3 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 26 March 2011 - 10:50 PM

Sounds about right to me. I'm hoping for something a little higher in the OPS than Fans or Zips but expecting something closer to Bill James..... which is fine. But does his drop in defensive production (due to the Monster) make it worth that contract? A RF'er in Fenway putting up those offensive stats would be fine if he had Crawford's defensive skills, I just wanted more power out of my LF'er here- something north of .500 in the SLG dept. I guess I also wonder if his horizontal range will allow Jacoby to focus more on his vertical range (which seemed his problem in '09)


It's too early to give up on Crawford developing more power, he was close to 500 in SLG last year and has improved each of the last 2 years. I remember folks claiming Youks would never hit 25+ HR, and in his age 29 season he hit 29 HR. Papi never hit 40 HR until he was 28. Yaz was 27 before he developed his power stroke.

If the projections are right and he maxes out at an 850 OPS this year and going forward, they can look to make up the power in RF after JD leaves.

I don't think Crawfords defensive production will drop all that much, but he is probably at or close to his peak so improving on his numbers at Fenway will be difficult. A lot depends on how he positions himself at Fenway. If he plays shallow he could save a lot of singles and doubles at Fenway and still get to balls just short of the wall, but will have less opportunity to catch balls in foul territory. Will be interesting to see how many assists he piles up and how well he plays the wall.

#4 avrsoxfan

  • 153 posts

Posted 28 March 2011 - 12:48 PM

I'd be very happy with those numbers.

#5 jmm57

  • 431 posts

Posted 19 April 2011 - 01:09 PM

Currently sporting the lowest wOBA of the 202 qualifiers in MLB.

He is also the only qualified player with a wRC+ below 0 at -14. James Loney is second worst at 3.

Its only 15 games, but still. The worst hitter in baseball?

Here's to starting a hot streak out west!

#6 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 22 April 2011 - 04:04 AM

Currently sporting the lowest wOBA of the 202 qualifiers in MLB.

He is also the only qualified player with a wRC+ below 0 at -14. James Loney is second worst at 3.

Its only 15 games, but still. The worst hitter in baseball?

Here's to starting a hot streak out west!


Good thing you did not mention his 2 week UZR. All I can say is it is a good thing Lowrie can not play LF :lol:

Seriously, a slow start probably should not have been unexpected, but I would not worry unless it continues into May.

#7 jmm57

  • 431 posts

Posted 22 April 2011 - 01:39 PM

Good thing you did not mention his 2 week UZR. All I can say is it is a good thing Lowrie can not play LF :lol:

Seriously, a slow start probably should not have been unexpected, but I would not worry unless it continues into May.


I understand the small sample...but to have the LOWEST wOBA and wRC+ is still pretty stunning.

FWIW, Brett Gardner has now taken the "lead".

#8 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 21 May 2011 - 01:14 AM

Seriously, a slow start probably should not have been unexpected, but I would not worry unless it continues into May.


Well May is 3/4 of the way over and Carls stats stand at 212/247/282/539 with 1 HR and 13 RBI.

Going into tonights game where he went 1-5 when the rest of the team was pounding the ball May Crawford has hit:

294/314/368/682 with 0 HR and 5 RBI. Granted, he did have 3 walkoff RBI's.

On the season, he has a 409 OPS against LHP'ers, and is HR less against RHP'ers. Some comfort can be taken in his 258 BABIP despite a LD rate comparable to last year. He has not been all that spectacular in the field and Pedroia has more SB than CC.

While I still expect him to return to form, despite being somewhat concerned, I can't help but noticing that Zips projection for this year is now

272/316/408/724 with 11 HR and 66 RBI with 82 R.

Fortunately the team is winning which should help take some of the pressure off him, and at the risk of embracing the gamblers fallacy, a hot streak could put him back on track to hit preseason projections.

Edited by Sampo Gida, 21 May 2011 - 01:14 AM.


#9 MegaMan Villain

  • 28 posts

Posted 17 July 2011 - 11:57 AM

“The fact he didn’t stick around [to talk to the media] must mean he’s OK,” -- Arnie Beyeler, the PawSox manager, per ESPN article.

Didn't think this quite deserved a new thread, but the quote from Arnie seems a little backhanded-- is there any evidence that CC is an ass?

I searched, and the only remotely questionable thing I could find was his backing out of an oral commitment to play football at OSU in favor of the financial security (and maybe career longevity) of playing baseball, certainly not a bad decision or one implying a questionable character.

Anyone?

#10 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 18 July 2011 - 02:52 AM

"The fact he didn't stick around [to talk to the media] must mean he's OK," -- Arnie Beyeler, the PawSox manager, per ESPN article.

Didn't think this quite deserved a new thread, but the quote from Arnie seems a little backhanded-- is there any evidence that CC is an ass?

I searched, and the only remotely questionable thing I could find was his backing out of an oral commitment to play football at OSU in favor of the financial security (and maybe career longevity) of playing baseball, certainly not a bad decision or one implying a questionable character.

Anyone?


Apparently CC was unhappy about an article by one of the writers and told the attendant to tell them he would meet them about 30 minutes after he left (link was on the mainboard).

CC is in new territory. Signed a 142 million deal with a big market team and has a negative WAR in the first half. Lot more pressure to perform here than in Tampa.

Have not heard of any character issues, but I remember Coco Crisp accused him of pulling his hair "like a little girl" in the Shields brawl.

#11 Robert A

  • 118 posts

Posted 23 July 2011 - 12:00 AM

I'm not going to lie. I would be saying this even if CC was batting .900 (.390/.405/.495); I don't like him. He's worthless at Fenway and, so far, no great shakes on the road either. He bats from the wrong side, doesn't get on base enough to justify his speed at the top of the order, has created redundancy with Kalish/Reddik, is being paid to provide power he apparently doesn't have, and with that salary, will cost this team a player (or two) we don't want gone. Reportedly, he also wouldn't be happy in CF, where at least he'd have value.

I'm not at all a hater, but I never saw the point of his being signed; $22m or $2m, didn't matter. It is the years that kills me. To date, I find his acquisition far less palatable than Lugo's. At least with Lugo I could understand. Renteria wasn't working and the farm was bare. We needed a SS and his OPS against this team was .800, arounds. I thought it would work but it didn't because Julio sucked, but again, at least I could understand what Theo was thinking. Now, what the hell was he thinking in regards to CC? How is this guy ever going to provide value to this team?

Maybe, if we're lucky James' will be closest, Bill James, 311/360/472/832 14 HR, 42 SB. I don't want that shit in LF for 6 more years. For this organization, that's replacement level.



#12 pantsparty

  • 68 posts

Posted 23 July 2011 - 12:43 AM

Has playing him in RF (where his speed would provide more value in Fenway) ever been discussed, or does he not have the arm for that?

#13 BellhornIsGod

  • 173 posts

Posted 23 July 2011 - 10:54 AM

I'm not going to lie. I would be saying this even if CC was batting .900 (.390/.405/.495); I don't like him. He's worthless at Fenway and, so far, no great shakes on the road either. He bats from the wrong side, doesn't get on base enough to justify his speed at the top of the order, has created redundancy with Kalish/Reddik, is being paid to provide power he apparently doesn't have, and with that salary, will cost this team a player (or two) we don't want gone. Reportedly, he also wouldn't be happy in CF, where at least he'd have value.

I'm not at all a hater, but I never saw the point of his being signed; $22m or $2m, didn't matter. It is the years that kills me. To date, I find his acquisition far less palatable than Lugo's. At least with Lugo I could understand. Renteria wasn't working and the farm was bare. We needed a SS and his OPS against this team was .800, arounds. I thought it would work but it didn't because Julio sucked, but again, at least I could understand what Theo was thinking. Now, what the hell was he thinking in regards to CC? How is this guy ever going to provide value to this team?

Maybe, if we're lucky James' will be closest, Bill James, 311/360/472/832 14 HR, 42 SB. I don't want that shit in LF for 6 more years. For this organization, that's replacement level.




This post makes my brain melt.

First of all .390/.405/.495 would be the most ridiculous split ever. That would be like 250 hits with only 20 walks and hitting nearly all singles. Probably not going to happen.

To your bigger point about Crawford having no value: This season as a whole has sucked immensely. However waking up on May 23rd with a .209/.243/.277 split (.520 OPS) he has hit at .314/.343/.569 (.911OPS) over his last 27 games. Obviously missing a month didn't help but he has been a completely different player since Late May. He also plays elite defense.

We overpaid for him, it happens. But I guarantee that over the next 6.5 years he plays a hell of a lot better than "replacement level".

Also Lugo didn't replace Renteria, he replaced Alex Gonzalez.




#14 BellhornIsGod

  • 173 posts

Posted 23 July 2011 - 10:58 AM

Has playing him in RF (where his speed would provide more value in Fenway) ever been discussed, or does he not have the arm for that?



I just can't see them moving a guy who has played the same position for 10 seasons (besides a couple dozen games in CF from 03-05) to right field when we have 2 potential in house replacements who forecast better in right field than he does, mostly because of arm strength. He is a great Left Fielder, he should stay there.




#15 Robert A

  • 118 posts

Posted 23 July 2011 - 02:28 PM

This post makes my brain melt.

First of all .390/.405/.495 would be the most ridiculous split ever. That would be like 250 hits with only 20 walks and hitting nearly all singles. Probably not going to happen.

Your sarcasm meter's on the blink. My point is, because he's shown no ability to take advantage of the Wall as a LHB, Fenway will get the best of him, so the only way he's hitting .900 here is with it driven by BA, and BABIP. In other words, he's not.

To your bigger point about Crawford having no value: This season as a whole has sucked immensely. However waking up on May 23rd with a .209/.243/.277 split (.520 OPS) he has hit at .314/.343/.569 (.911OPS) over his last 27 games. Obviously missing a month didn't help but he has been a completely different player since Late May.


Please.
April/March - .431
May - .810
June - .761
July - .728

He is what he is, although your claim still somewhat addresses my point. I know he hit fairly well before getting hurt, but he also did so invisibly. He is neither an impact top or middle of the order bat, yet he's being paid as one - which, assuming a budget, may cost us a real one down the road.

He also plays elite defense.

Reputedly. For now, I am assuming he just needs to adjust to Fenway.

We overpaid for him, it happens. But I guarantee that over the next 6.5 years he plays a hell of a lot better than "replacement level".

That's not at all what I said. I said that if James' forecast is right, those were replacement level numbers for a Red Sox LF. Williams to Yaz to Rice to Manny to :blank stare:

Also Lugo didn't replace Renteria, he replaced Alex Gonzalez

Technically that is correct.

#16 pantsparty

  • 68 posts

Posted 23 July 2011 - 07:48 PM

I know he hit fairly well before getting hurt, but he also did so invisibly.



Can you explain what you mean by this? I'm not trying to nitpick.

#17 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 24 July 2011 - 02:57 AM

To your bigger point about Crawford having no value: This season as a whole has sucked immensely. However waking up on May 23rd with a .209/.243/.277 split (.520 OPS) he has hit at .314/.343/.569 (.911OPS) over his last 27 games. Obviously missing a month didn't help but he has been a completely different player since Late May. He also plays elite defense.


That 27 game streak was entirely due to back to back 4 hit games in blowouts of 14-1 and 14-2. After these 2 games, over the next 19 he went243/270/429/699 before landing on the DL.

Not sure he woke up, just stirred a bit in his sleep. :lol:

Also, I am a bit disappointed in his defense which has not seemed "elite" to me yet. Does not seem to do well going back on balls close to the wall and his arm is worse than I thought. Not only is it not very strong, but his release seems slow and his accuracy is not very good. He has yet to record his first assist in Fenways LF as a Red Sox. Fenway makes most LF'ers appear to have rocket arms with all the assists they get (ala Bay and Manny). UZR also seems rather unimpressed( I know, SSS, but it loves Jacoby and Pedroia, so maybe it's right)

I do agree that his best is yet to come.








#18 BellhornIsGod

  • 173 posts

Posted 24 July 2011 - 04:30 PM

That 27 game streak was entirely due to back to back 4 hit games in blowouts of 14-1 and 14-2. After these 2 games, over the next 19 he went243/270/429/699 before landing on the DL.

Not sure he woke up, just stirred a bit in his sleep. :lol:








Yea a lot of it was in 2 games, but removing the 2 best games from the sample size just doesn't make sense. Going the other way with it, if you remove his 0-11 on May 29/30 then he actually hit .363/.393/.675/1.068 over a 24 game stretch before his injury. Players are always going to ebb and flow over specific stretches of games, not counting 2 great games or 2 really crappy ones isn't usually a good practice IMO.

Obviously I agree with the general statement that Crawford has been bad this year, but he is now in an extended period of play (33 games) of very good offensive numbers with a 4 week absence mixed in.

And to Robert A's point that his offense has been invisible, I don't really understand that at all. Do you mean that his hits haven't been important? Because he has 3 walk off hit's this year as well as setting up Drew's June 4th walk-off with a Double. A lot of that is just the luck of being in that situation, but still when given the chance to get "non-invisible" hits he has done a pretty good job of that. Unless you mean something different?

Another good day today and I think we can all agree that if he can be his pre-2011 self in the 6 spot this team will only get better from here, which has got to be terrifying to the rest of the league.

#19 Robert A

  • 118 posts

Posted 24 July 2011 - 08:09 PM

Like JD but worse because CC has less power and OB skills, CC's bat will lead to less runs created because he'll bat down in the order, where, unfortunatly, he belongs. That will lead to less counting stats, what I mean by "invisible"

You don't pay a #6-7 batter $14m, and you sure as shit don't pay him $22m. At this point I think Theo was wrong to think CC was a #3 batter in Boston. CC is a very well-rounded player, but he's not a good enough batter to be slotted #3 here.

#20 touchstone033

  • 180 posts

Posted 24 July 2011 - 08:41 PM

I wonder if Theo signed CC thinking Ellsbury would be trade bait, and CC slotting into the leadoff spot...but then Ellsbury has burst! out! Still, while the Crawford signing was incredibly inefficient -- I wasn't thrilled when it was announced -- the Sox can afford to overpay for assets. Crawford will be a great defender and an above average hitter in the bottom half of the lineup for years to come...

Also, the FA market for OFers looks pretty bleak the next couple of years. The best in 2012 is Beltran, then Cuddyer, then a cliff. In 2013 it's Hamilton, Ethier, then a cliff. Crawford might have been Boston's best opportunity to acquire an above-average outfielder from the FA market for a few years. Six years, though...that's a looo-oo-oong contract...

As you can tell, I'm deeply ambivalent about the deal.



#21 BellhornIsGod

  • 173 posts

Posted 24 July 2011 - 09:33 PM

Like JD but worse because CC has less power and OB skills, CC's bat will lead to less runs created because he'll bat down in the order, where, unfortunatly, he belongs. That will lead to less counting stats, what I mean by "invisible"

You don't pay a #6-7 batter $14m, and you sure as shit don't pay him $22m. At this point I think Theo was wrong to think CC was a #3 batter in Boston. CC is a very well-rounded player, but he's not a good enough batter to be slotted #3 here.




I think you are getting a little to tied up in what number hitter he is. The reason he is batting 6th is because the 1-5 hitters on this team are putting up historic numbers (see the Greatest 1-5 hitters of all time" thread). He has been hitting the ball extremely well since late May but basically no matter what he does from here on out he will hit 6th. It really doesn't mean all that much.

You can say "You don't pay a #6-7 hitter 22M (its actually 20M but I get your point) but that's not how the Red Sox think of things. Crawford is a versatile hitter. He profiles very well as a #2 hitter but can also be valuable anymore else in the lineup. The point is if he hits the way he has the past 5 full seasons, and he has since late May, he is going to be extremely valuable no matter where he hits in the lineup.

As for his lack of counting stats, despite his horrific first 40 games Carl currently has 35 RBI and 37 Runs scored in 73 games played. That's a pace for 78 RBI and 82 Runs over a full season. Considering how poor of a start he had I actually think that's a pretty decent amount, and if he continues to hit the way he has the past 30+ games, those numbers will only go up.

I agree that the Sox overpaid but I don't think it's because Crawford isn't a top 5 hitter. He hit 2nd or 3rd and was really productive for some really good Tampa teams and would do the same here if our #1-5 weren't channeling the '27 Yankees. He was probably worth 6 years ~100 million but the Red Sox did what big market teams do, they overpaid to get what they wanted.

#22 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 24 July 2011 - 10:32 PM

Yea a lot of it was in 2 games, but removing the 2 best games from the sample size just doesn't make sense. Going the other way with it, if you remove his 0-11 on May 29/30 then he actually hit .363/.393/.675/1.068 over a 24 game stretch before his injury. Players are always going to ebb and flow over specific stretches of games, not counting 2 great games or 2 really crappy ones isn't usually a good practice IMO.


Neither does removing his first 46 games. The difference between what you just did and I did is I counted consecutive games from an arbitrary point in time while you just selected out some games in the middle of a sample of games chosen arbitrarily. Now if you want to start counting from May 30, CC went 286/305/464/769 in the 15 consecutive games before he went on the DL, and that's ok, even if it does not mean all that much.

Another good day today and I think we can all agree that if he can be his pre-2011 self in the 6 spot this team will only get better from here, which has got to be terrifying to the rest of the league.


Yes, it does seem like when the Red Sox as a team score a pile of runs CC joins the party and gets his 3-4 hits. That's probably true for most players though. Off the DL, CC faces 3 last place teams, so I am going to hold off on saying CC is back until we face a little better competition.

I do agree that if CC hits in the 2nd half the way he was projected to at the start of the season the offense will be much stronger

Can't help but note his 5th CS today to go along with 10 SB and a 66% success rate. Have to imagine this will improve as well.

Also noted his incredible day.night splits. Before today, he had a 919 OPS during the day and 537 at night. Could be just a SSS effect, or maybe his routine before night games should be changed.

Edited by Sampo Gida, 24 July 2011 - 10:33 PM.


#23 williams_482

  • 123 posts

Posted 24 July 2011 - 11:31 PM

I'm not going to lie. I would be saying this even if CC was batting .900 (.390/.405/.495); I don't like him. He's worthless at Fenway and, so far, no great shakes on the road either. He bats from the wrong side, doesn't get on base enough to justify his speed at the top of the order, has created redundancy with Kalish/Reddik, is being paid to provide power he apparently doesn't have, and with that salary, will cost this team a player (or two) we don't want gone. Reportedly, he also wouldn't be happy in CF, where at least he'd have value.

I'm not at all a hater, but I never saw the point of his being signed; $22m or $2m, didn't matter. It is the years that kills me. To date, I find his acquisition far less palatable than Lugo's. At least with Lugo I could understand. Renteria wasn't working and the farm was bare. We needed a SS and his OPS against this team was .800, arounds. I thought it would work but it didn't because Julio sucked, but again, at least I could understand what Theo was thinking. Now, what the hell was he thinking in regards to CC? How is this guy ever going to provide value to this team?

Maybe, if we're lucky James' will be closest, Bill James, 311/360/472/832 14 HR, 42 SB. I don't want that shit in LF for 6 more years. For this organization, that's replacement level.



There are so may silly things in this post, but the two bolded bits have to be the best. you would really be saying that your suggested .405 OBP is not getting on base enough to lead off and use his speed?

Also, a .311/.360/.472 line from LF is only "replacement level for this organization" because we are willing and able to pay $20M per year for it.

#24 Robert A

  • 118 posts

Posted 25 July 2011 - 12:36 AM

You can say "You don't pay a #6-7 hitter 22M (its actually 20M but I get your point) but that's not how the Red Sox think of things. Crawford is a versatile hitter. He profiles very well as a #2 hitter but can also be valuable anymore else in the lineup. The point is if he hits the way he has the past 5 full seasons, and he has since late May, he is going to be extremely valuable no matter where he hits in the lineup.




Eh. He's still a career .334 OBP bat who averages 15 HR's, and his being a LHB in Fenway whose SLG% is to RF won't help matters for the foreseeable future. I don't see how this ballpark will improve on those TB numbers - which aren't anything to write home about anyway.

He's not a leadoff man because of his OBP skills, also by preference, nor a #2 for the same reasons, nor a 3, 4 or 5 because of his pedestrian power. I just don't see his bat deserving of a higher place than 6. And that means something because, if we're paying our #6 batter $20m, it stands to reason that they'll be less money to spend on the top of the order.

1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 >> 6

#25 Robert A

  • 118 posts

Posted 25 July 2011 - 12:46 AM

Also, a .311/.360/.472 line from LF is only "replacement level for this organization" because we are willing and able to pay $20M per year for it.

Coincidentally enough, there happen to be 20 ML outfielders batting better than .832. We should also wait for Carl to be one them first before debating how good, bad or meh that is.

#26 BellhornIsGod

  • 173 posts

Posted 25 July 2011 - 08:04 AM

Neither does removing his first 46 games. The difference between what you just did and I did is I counted consecutive games from an arbitrary point in time while you just selected out some games in the middle of a sample of games chosen arbitrarily. Now if you want to start counting from May 30, CC went 286/305/464/769 in the 15 consecutive games before he went on the DL, and that's ok, even if it does not mean all that much.




Oops, thought you just removed the 2 games from the sample size, you just slid the date forward, apologies.

Getting back to my original point though, for Crawford's first 40+ games he was horrific, I understand that you do not just remove that from the equation. He hurt the team in that time frame and deserved every criticism he got. But those 40 games as well as the month he missed are going to drag his season long numbers down no matter what so I do think there is value in looking at his season since he really began turning things around in the Cleveland/Detroit road trip in May. Since that time, now 30 games, he has been basically exactly what we thought we signed. Despite a fairly neutral BABIP (.338 during this streak compared with .328 for his career) he has produced at a .900+ OPS clip. Yes it would be great to see him walk more but hitting in this lineup, he has a lot of guys on base before him and is seeing a lot of fastballs so the walk rate will probably stay fairly low. The real question is what will we get going forward, and I am confident the Carl we get going forward will be a lot closer to the guy we've got recently than the weak grounder to 2nd base machine we saw in April-May.

As for the Day/Night splits, that's an interesting point but I have to believe that its SSS. In nearly 6000 PA in his career he is at .780 at night and .761 during the day. Now maybe he is having trouble seeing during night games at Fenway due to the backdrop composed of fans. But more than likely it's something that will begin to even out.

And the low stolen base numbers..maybe the fact that he hasn't got the chance to steal 723 bases a game against Victor/Tek is finally catching up to him..

#27 Robert A

  • 118 posts

Posted 25 July 2011 - 09:34 AM

And the low stolen base numbers..maybe the fact that he hasn't got the chance to steal 723 bases a game against Victor/Tek is finally catching up to him..

First I laughed, then I went to the tape: 62/66 SB vs BOS. I'm not laughing anymore (well, maybe a little..).

#28 williams_482

  • 123 posts

Posted 25 July 2011 - 04:32 PM

Coincidentally enough, there happen to be 20 ML outfielders batting better than .832. We should also wait for Carl to be one them first before debating how good, bad or meh that is.


If you are saying we should wait until Crawford has played more than half a season before we trash Theo for the contract, I am all for it.

#29 touchstone033

  • 180 posts

Posted 25 July 2011 - 06:01 PM

If you are saying we should wait until Crawford has played more than half a season before we trash Theo for the contract, I am all for it.


Actually, we should probably wait 3 or 4 years...

#30 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 26 July 2011 - 02:03 AM

As for the Day/Night splits, that's an interesting point but I have to believe that its SSS. In nearly 6000 PA in his career he is at .780 at night and .761 during the day. Now maybe he is having trouble seeing during night games at Fenway due to the backdrop composed of fans. But more than likely it's something that will begin to even out.

And the low stolen base numbers..maybe the fact that he hasn't got the chance to steal 723 bases a game against Victor/Tek is finally catching up to him..


I dunno, maybe ha has cataracts or something, or works out too much before the game. Whatever it is, it should be correctable.

As for his SB, I remember in ST the TBR announcers saying Crawford bulked up a lot working out at API in hopes of increasing his power. The wondered how much the increased weight would effect his running game. No idea if this is the reason or not.

#31 williams_482

  • 123 posts

Posted 26 July 2011 - 12:05 PM

Actually, we should probably wait 3 or 4 years...


Yes, exactly.

#32 heisenbergsrat

  • 2 posts

Posted 26 July 2011 - 12:32 PM

I wonder if Theo signed CC thinking Ellsbury would be trade bait, and CC slotting into the leadoff spot...but then Ellsbury has burst! out! Still, while the Crawford signing was incredibly inefficient -- I wasn't thrilled when it was announced -- the Sox can afford to overpay for assets. Crawford will be a great defender and an above average hitter in the bottom half of the lineup for years to come...

Also, the FA market for OFers looks pretty bleak the next couple of years. The best in 2012 is Beltran, then Cuddyer, then a cliff. In 2013 it's Hamilton, Ethier, then a cliff. Crawford might have been Boston's best opportunity to acquire an above-average outfielder from the FA market for a few years. Six years, though...that's a looo-oo-oong contract...

As you can tell, I'm deeply ambivalent about the deal.




#33 jasail

  • 626 posts

Posted 26 July 2011 - 01:35 PM

I wonder if Theo signed CC thinking Ellsbury would be trade bait, and CC slotting into the leadoff spot...but then Ellsbury has burst! out! Still, while the Crawford signing was incredibly inefficient -- I wasn't thrilled when it was announced -- the Sox can afford to overpay for assets. Crawford will be a great defender and an above average hitter in the bottom half of the lineup for years to come...

Also, the FA market for OFers looks pretty bleak the next couple of years. The best in 2012 is Beltran, then Cuddyer, then a cliff. In 2013 it's Hamilton, Ethier, then a cliff. Crawford might have been Boston's best opportunity to acquire an above-average outfielder from the FA market for a few years. Six years, though...that's a looo-oo-oong contract...

As you can tell, I'm deeply ambivalent about the deal.




1) I thought at the time and still think there was some aspect of cheerleading to this signing. They are a big market team with a big time payroll and can afford to overpay. After last year's decline in ratings, I think the FO was looking to bump interest. While Gonzalez is the better player and the better signing, he was a virtual unknown to many casual Red Sox fans and NESN viewers; Crawford, OTOH, tormented the Sox for the better part of a decade as a member of a pesky divisional rival. IMO, this was not a pure baseball signing, there was marketing and viewership reasons for bringing Crawford in.

2) On the baseball side, I think you need to split out three ideas:
A) Projected Power - Crawford, with the exception of his injury plagued 2008, had seen a consistent up tick in his power numbers with career highs last year in HR, OPS and SLG. Considering his age, 29, they were likely thinking he was hitting his late 20 - early 30 power surge and for the following 3-5 seasons he would hit above career averages in power categories.
B) The Ellsbury Factor - Ellsbury was coming off an injury plagued season, was having issues with the team's medical treatment and his agent is Scott Boras. I the winter of 2010-2011, the worst case scenario for Ellsbury was that he did not improve his patience and power at the plate and projected as a bottom 3rd singles hitter and base stealer, in which case the Sox needed immediate help at the top of the line. Although you could argue Crawford is not the prototype there, he played the role well in Tampa. The best case scenario is that Ellsbury improved and became a similar player to Crawford. In this case Boras works Ellsbury to free agency and demands a similar contract to what ever Crawford gets and they get a similar, younger player (at time of FA) for similar money.
C) Kalish/Reddick and the Trade Market - Signing Crawford gave the Sox 3 valuable trade chips in Ellsbury, Reddick and Kalish. It is conceivable and likely that the Sox will package one of these players in the coming years to bring back an elite player.

My feeling is the Sox didn't want to sign another stop-gap in LF after last year's "bridge year" PR disaster. Crawford was a flashy name for them to get and a guy that casual fans knew and could be excited about. On the baseball side it was likely projected that he would see a power surge in the first 1/2 to 2/3 of his contract and he would provide insurance against Ellsbury sucking or outperforming his contract and leaving as an FA and the Sox now have a redundant cost controlled trade chip which provides them the ability improve the roster elsewhere. Regardless it is going to take a number of years to determine if this deal was a good or a bad one. Unfortunately for Crawford, he will probably never be a player close to Gonzo's value; I just hope he doesn't take JD Drew's place in the eyes of fans.

#34 Robert A

  • 118 posts

Posted 27 July 2011 - 07:53 AM

IMO, this was not a pure baseball signing, there was marketing and viewership reasons for bringing Crawford in.

There is no question here that this is true. He's also the league's premier black player, which you could have mentioned.

Unfortunately for Crawford, he will probably never be a player close to Gonzo's value; I just hope he doesn't take JD Drew's place in the eyes of fans.

Unfortunately, he is destined to if he remains on the back 3rd of the lineup - where, with his discipline, or thereof, is where he probably fits best. Like Drew, he won't compile the counting stats most fans associate with value while hitting there. It will again become a case of "he's not worth $1420 million, look at his R or RBI totals. Ripoff!"

#35 jasail

  • 626 posts

Posted 27 July 2011 - 08:50 AM

There is no question here that this is true. He's also the league's premier black player, which you could have mentioned.


Unfortunately, he is destined to if he remains on the back 3rd of the lineup - where, with his discipline, or thereof, is where he probably fits best. Like Drew, he won't compile the counting stats most fans associate with value while hitting there. It will again become a case of "he's not worth $1420 million, look at his R or RBI totals. Ripoff!"


I agree entirely and it is why I turn down the radio every time his name comes up. He is not a $20M player, but that doesn't make a difference. He is better than the other options the Sox had to put into LF this year and his $20M is going to be more palatable moving forward when the Sox OF is making a total of $25-30M over the next number of years. IMO you can't look at it position-by-position, but rather as a sum of it's parts. The Sox came in with a $45M ish OF this year with Cameron, Drew, Ellsbury, Crawford and McDonald. Going into next year they will likely have a better OF for a little more than half the money. His cost is offset by Ellsbury and Reddick's affordability. Similarly, Lackey's cost is offset by Lester and Clay's affordability. Gonzalez and Ortiz by Pedroia and Youk. The only time overpaid players come to bite teams in the rear, is when they don't have strong player development - the Cubs (until this year) come to mind as they continued to hand out bad contracts to fill roster spots.

#36 Robert A

  • 118 posts

Posted 27 July 2011 - 10:13 PM

I agree entirely and it is why I turn down the radio every time his name comes up. He is not a $20M player, but that doesn't make a difference. He is better than the other options the Sox had to put into LF this year and his $20M is going to be more palatable moving forward when the Sox OF is making a total of $25-30M over the next number of years. IMO you can't look at it position-by-position, but rather as a sum of it's parts. The Sox came in with a $45M ish OF this year with Cameron, Drew, Ellsbury, Crawford and McDonald. Going into next year they will likely have a better OF for a little more than half the money. His cost is offset by Ellsbury and Reddick's affordability. Similarly, Lackey's cost is offset by Lester and Clay's affordability. Gonzalez and Ortiz by Pedroia and Youk. The only time overpaid players come to bite teams in the rear, is when they don't have strong player development - the Cubs (until this year) come to mind as they continued to hand out bad contracts to fill roster spots.

This statement bothers me. While true, it pains me to think that a resolution for this year will extend for another 6. I also believe that his acquisition would be far more palatable if instead of him bulking up to hit more HR's, he became devoted to take more walks and playing quality CF for when Jake is gone. I pray that this was a handshake agreement between he and Theo.








#37 Wilco's Last Fan

  • 383 posts

Posted 09 August 2011 - 10:27 AM

I know that our boy Crawford is heating up now, and so maybe (hopefully) his problems are behind him, but given his day/night (.968 in daytime vs .564 at night) splits and his horrible plate discipline this year, is it possible he may need glasses? I know that daytime number is driven by a huge BABIP (.427), but given the subpar BABIP in 60 night games (.245) and the aforementioned terrible plate discipline/walk rate, could he be having problems seeing the ball?

I know this came up a couple years back with Ortiz and it was mostly scoffed at, but it's just another possibility when trying to decipher Crawford's down year. Hopefully I'm wrong, and after this weekend's Yanks series he turns on the jets and doesn't look back.

#38 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 09 August 2011 - 11:17 PM

I know that our boy Crawford is heating up now, and so maybe (hopefully) his problems are behind him, but given his day/night (.968 in daytime vs .564 at night) splits and his horrible plate discipline this year, is it possible he may need glasses? I know that daytime number is driven by a huge BABIP (.427), but given the subpar BABIP in 60 night games (.245) and the aforementioned terrible plate discipline/walk rate, could he be having problems seeing the ball?


Or as I pointed out earlier in the thread it could be:

Could be just a SSS effect, or maybe his routine before night games should be changed.



#39 kieckeredinthehead

  • 3579 posts

Posted 11 August 2011 - 07:02 PM

Crawford has always been really streaky, which makes judging his performance much harder from partial seasons.

OPS by month
2011: 431/810/761/599/980
2010: 941/794/862/839/683/989
2009: 708/921/869/816/782/771
2008: 704/712/761/655/883/injured
2007: 828/897/660/758/938/812

Not to get too far ahead of ourselves, but here are the postseason numbers:

ALDS 2008 (vs CHW): 214/313/214, 14AB
ALCS 2008 (vs BOS): 345/367/483, 29AB
WS 2008 (vs PHI): 263/300/632, 19AB
ALDS 2010 (vs TEX): 143/143/286, 21AB

Totals: 83 AB, 253/287/422 (709 OPS).

My big fear at this point is that he's going to start slumping right before or during the postseason. He's a total crapshoot -- he could carry the team for an entire series, or he could be flailing at sliders off the plate for 20 ABs. He did homer off Hamels in the '08 WS, so there's some L-L hope.

#40 Sampo Gida

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Posted 17 August 2011 - 04:11 AM

My big fear at this point is that he's going to start slumping right before or during the postseason. He's a total crapshoot -- he could carry the team for an entire series, or he could be flailing at sliders off the plate for 20 ABs. He did homer off Hamels in the '08 WS, so there's some L-L hope.


He is 4 for 28 since the Yankee series and has a 690 OPS since coming off the DL. His hot streaks are lasting less than a week this year. Lets hope the KCR pitching heats up his bat some now that Papi is out for a bit.

#41 Coachster

  • 648 posts

Posted 18 August 2011 - 01:29 PM

I can't watch him hit. He's just brutal. How many of his recent 4 for 28 streak were strikeouts? How many of those strikeouts were 0-2 or 1-2 off-speed pitches away, in the dirt?

Here's every CC at bat in the last week:

strike one, looking
fouled in the dirt, strike two
takes a fastball either high, or very wide
swings and misses, late, at a curve/ split-finger that bounced at 57 feet.

I like jasail's point. We're paying him this dough because we have terrific bargains on Ellsbury and Reddick, so we can. However, if Ryan Kalish was healthy, we could be paying major league minimum for someone who had better #'s last season, and is arguably a better fielder (who could play somewhere OTHER than left), and have had $$ to get a better upgrade than Bedard.

6 more years. I can't wait.

#42 ivanvamp


  • one campus at a time..


  • 4115 posts

Posted 25 August 2011 - 06:11 AM

Since May 23, here's Crawford's line: 58 g, 219 ab, 64 h, 35 r, 12 2b, 4 3b, 8 hr, 33 rbi, 11 sb, .292 avg

Maybe still not quite what we were expecting (especially for the money), but that's not bad at all.

To give you an idea of what that performance really looks like, project that line over 600 ab, and it comes to: 600 ab, 175 h, 96 r, 33 2b, 11 3b, 22 hr, 90 rbi, 30 sb, .292 avg

If we had that guy all year long, I suspect most of us would be satisfied.

#43 keyalyn

  • 549 posts

Posted 25 August 2011 - 11:53 PM

But if you move that number just a few games down to May 27, his numbers plummet to .266/.303/.424. He goes from an .821OPS to a .726OPS by removing just the 4 games at the start of that sample. He has had short stretches where he hit the crap out of the ball, and long stretches where he was replacement level with the bat. It averages out to look pretty nice, but in reality it isn't all that encouraging.

May 23-26 (4 games) 2.022OPS
May 27-August 4 (35 games) .663OPS
August 5-7 (3 games) 1.686OPS
August 8-NOW (16 games) .673OPS

Edited by keyalyn, 25 August 2011 - 11:54 PM.


#44 Sampo Gida

  • 3113 posts

Posted 26 August 2011 - 01:54 AM

CC first half OPS 649, 2nd half OPS 740. No need to cherry pick any other starting points. He is underperforming expectations even in the 2nd half after a 1 week hot streak.

His 535 OPS against LHP'ers, 763 OPS against RHP'ers suggest he is a platoon candidate. His career OPS against LHP'ers is 683 .

The thing about Crawford is he has hit well in games when the Red Sox are scoring big but not when they don't, which suggests he is not hitting better pitching and simply joins the party with everyone else when they run into bad pitching. In games the Red Sox have scored 10 or more runs he is batting 500. In all others, he is batting only 212.

For comparison, here are Pedroias, Ellsbury's and A-Gons numbers (no time to do more).

10+ run games (bad pitching)

A-Gon 512
Pedroia 456
Ellsbury 422

Under 10 runs per game (better pitching)

A-Gon -314
Pedroia-277
Ellsbury -293

So Crawford is not hitting in games the team is not scoring a ton of runs in as well as others.

One thing CC has improved on since coming off the DL is his baserunning, at least his SB totals are accumulating faster (9 SB, 35 games). Maybe his hitting follows. I mentioned sometime ago that the Rays announcers had mentioned in ST that Crawford gained a lot of weight (muscle) in the offseason to improve his power numbers, but it looks like it reduced his bat speed and slowed his running game down. I think as Crawford gets back to where he was physically everything else will come back.

#45 chester

  • 1035 posts

Posted 26 August 2011 - 02:28 AM

Since May 23, here's Crawford's line: 58 g, 219 ab, 64 h, 35 r, 12 2b, 4 3b, 8 hr, 33 rbi, 11 sb, .292 avg

Maybe still not quite what we were expecting (especially for the money), but that's not bad at all.

To give you an idea of what that performance really looks like, project that line over 600 ab, and it comes to: 600 ab, 175 h, 96 r, 33 2b, 11 3b, 22 hr, 90 rbi, 30 sb, .292 avg

If we had that guy all year long, I suspect most of us would be satisfied.


I don't care how you slice the numbers so far, he has been disappointing for me. And then when you figure in the contract, he has underperformed.

But the key phrase in the first sentence is so far. I think that the Sox singed him for that much money (and they outbid themselves) for a few reasons. The first was to keep him away from everyone else (ie the Yankees). The second was for insurance for Ellsbury, its easy to forget at this point with Jacoby tearing the cover off the ball and playing GG CF but there was a contingency that thought he was finished here. Third, was Crawford's emerging power; 19 HRs in 2010 to go with 30 2b and 13 3b and it looked like his SLG% was going to be climbing over .500 every year. And lastly was his athletic ability that allowed him to play GG outfield and find ways to get on base and most importantly score runs.

It is funny but Ellsbury is the playing what people believed to be Crawford's highest potential was, and maybe that has something to do with Carl's initial struggles.

Well like I said earlier Carl has underperformed SO FAR, and I think he can turn it around. While Ellsbury might have taken his lead role from him I think is beginning to find a role for himself. His defense at Fenway will always be mitigated because his tools can not be utilized to their potential there, but it seems like he is beginning to be more focused at the plate putting better swings on the ball and having more confidence. Although I think he is turning a corner he really needs to take a couple of more walks, which I understand is hard for him b/c he is trying to be more aggressive, but is key to him getting back on track and maybe performing near what we paid for him.

edit: That is an interesting point in the column above, about him joining the party and I have noticed that is some respects. Although I think he is trying to be more aggressive when the Sox need it and I think it will come in due time. And if losing some muscle mass and is the key for him to get on base more than I am all for it, I have noticed that he is a tad bulkier.

Edited by chester, 26 August 2011 - 02:34 AM.


#46 OnWisc

  • 968 posts

Posted 29 September 2011 - 06:31 PM

After two weeks of what has seemed like watching Crawford flail away at the first couple pitches, contributing to brief, single-digit pitch count innings for our opponents, I looked at some of his numbers (baseball-reference)

For the season, he ended up seeing 3.88 pitches per PA, which was actually ahead of Adrian and Ellsbury, who saw 3.83 (Reddick, Lowrie and Aviles also saw fewer). This is the high-water mark in CC's career, as his seasonal average is 3.53, and his previous high came was 3.75 in 2009. So he arguably was as patient as he's ever been.

As far as swinging at the first pitch, Crawford did this in 25% of PA's this season. His ratio the previous five seasons was 35%, 32%, 39%, 43%, 36%. While he swung at the first pitch less often than only Papi, Adrian, Tek and Salty, it's still a substantial drop vs. his previous efforts. And looking at the Sox as a team vs the Rays in this department in 2010, the Red Sox were 13th in swinging at the first pitch (21%). Tampa was 2nd (29%) behind only the possible sign-stealing Jays (34%). Despite this, the Rays were still second in the AL behind the Sox in pitches seen per PA.

I expected to see different numbers. Perhaps coming into Boston, Crawford felt pressured to lay off that first pitch more and work the count a bit and it just screwed everything up for him. Perhaps I'm just looking for silly explanations to a frustrating question. It's probably the latter. But I was surprised to see how much MORE selective Crawford was this year, and how much it may have actually hurt his performance.