For the first time since August of 2012, and for the first time in Dodger Blue, Carl Crawford will be playing in left field tonight, as the Dodgers take on the Chicago White Sox at Camelback Ranch in a rare evening spring home game. Crawford has been rehabbing his surgically repaired elbow the entire spring.
The Dodgers have been being very careful with Crawford. The former all-star outfielder had Tommy John surgery on his left elbow last August. After being traded from the Red Sox to the Dodgers in the nine player blockbuster deal last Summer, Crawford expected to be ready by opening day.
That looked doubtful in the beginning of the spring. Crawford had reported feeling some discomfort and was still unable to throw at all. He had been diagnosed with some nerve discomfort in his arm, which is supposedly somewhat normal when a position player is coming off of TJ surgery. The Dodgers kept him out of games for a while, and the medical staff kept a close eye on his progress. He was able to build up his arm strength. Finally last Sunday, Crawford made his spring debut for the Dodgers. For about a week now, Crawford has been leading-off and playing at DH. The Dodgers have decided that it is time for Crawford to play the field.
The Dodgers wanted to wait until Crawford was throwing up to 120 feet and was able to hit the cut-off man. Crawford had been reaching up to 90 feet last week, and should be able to hit his targets just fine. Crawford has been participating in relay and cut-off drills this week, and the Dodgers now expect for Crawford to be ready to play, and in the opening day lineup. Crawford is expected to be the club’s lead-off hitter all throughout the season.
Crawford is batting .231 (3 for 14) in four spring games, and 14 plate appearances, so far this spring. Crawford has one stolen base, and two RBI. You can catch Crawford in the field with the rest of the Boys in Blue on KCAL 9 tonight. The Dodger game will be broadcast on channel 9 at 7:05 PM. Don’t sleep!