The Red Sox officially introduced Carl Crawford Saturday, just a few days after Adrian Gonzalez donned the Red Sox cap and jersey for the first time.
"I'm definitely excited to be in Boston," said a scratchy-voiced Crawford, fighting a sore throat. "You know it's going to be sold old, you know it's going to be exciting, you know there's going to be a lot of screaming and hollering. You know that's something that gets you up, it keeps you going."
Nobody may be more excited to have Crawford in Boston than Terry Francona, though, who GM Theo Epstein identified as "one of Carl's biggest fans," and acknowledged was pushing for the outfielder.
With the formalities out of the way, conversation quickly moved to strategy.
Crawford was quick to say that he would go wherever Terry Francona wanted him to. While Tito acknowledged Crawford's willingness, it doesn't seem like he has any plans to put him in the leadoff spot, saying that the Red Sox were at their best with Jacoby hitting leadoff. As far as Crawford was concerned, Francona said that he was a top-of-the-order guy, and since Tito expects to talk with both Crawford and Pedroia in the coming days, it seems like his spot at second might be Crawford's destination.
Crawford also seems to be destined for left field, with Francona mentioning the lightened pressure on Jacoby to get to balls to his left. Being surrounded by top defensive players might be just what Ellsbury needs to overcome the criticisms his defense has received the past couple of years.
Wherever he plays and wherever he hits, though, Crawford's goal is clear:
"I just want to embrace the whole thing, become a part of it, and try my best to help this team get to the postseason and the World Series."