Valentine greets Crawford

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Jim Davis/Globe Staff

FORT MYERS, Fla. — Carl Crawford got right to work, taking the field with Adrian Gonzalez, Kevin Youkilis and the rest of the crew to stretch and play catch.

Bobby Valentine came over and had a 10-minute conversation that had Crawford laughing and even high-fiving his new manager at one point.

When Crawford jogged off, Valentine turned to a group of fans nearby and said, “Hey, that’s Carl Crawford. He’s here early!”

Valentine is going to be the best thing that ever happened to Crawford. You watch.

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