Re: A Realistic look at 2012: Part I
posted at 10/26/2011 12:30 AM EDT
In Response to Re: A Realistic look at 2012: Part I
[QUOTE]In Response to Re: A Realistic look at 2012: Part I : Well, no one who's actually smart agrees with me, but that's no surprise. I just think the advantage of having Crawford hitting to his career norms outweighs the advantages of having a higher OBP guy hitting 2nd. Yes, Youk has a higher career OBP, much higher in fact. But I think it would be a good idea to get CC somewhere close to back to his comfort zone. Let's face it, the young man's confidence really took a beating this year and it might behoove the Red Sox to do something to give him back his swagger.
Posted by carnie[/QUOTE]
Carnie, I thought about your proposal before, at least in terms of Crawford batting 2nd. In 2010 he indicated the ability to maybe get on base at a .350 - .360 clip. And if he does he would be a major force on the basepaths. His game is enhanced if he is near the top of the lineup. He is a tremendous base runner. He can potentially be an excellent #2.
Adding to that, let's face it. Hitting #2 in front of Agon is a great place to hit especially for a guy who needs strikes to hit. If they tell Crawford to calm down about 1,000 times and get him to look at some pitches I don't see a lot of teams wanting to take a chance to walk him with Agon etc...up next. It is in many ways the best way to get him back in form IMO.
Again, I did think about it. I don't think it is crazy at all when we look at the total lineup. It stretches the lineup and sure puts a lot of pressure on opposing pitchers if either Ellsbury or Crawford or both get on in front of the meat of this order.
I do not support having to have the same lineup every day, i.e. Tito's approach generally. Against RH pitching, I think going with Crawford as #2 and showing him some confidence in 2012 is absolutely an option.
Where I came down in the end is that Ellsbury is LH, Pedroia is RH, then Gonzalez is LH again. Pedroia is also a consistently proven commodity in that slot. Batting Crawford down in the lineup clerly hurts him. We need to find a way to protect him in the lineup, to enable him to see more strikes, or he will not be optimized. It was a tough call.