April 30, 2011

Peter Abraham: Psst! Carl Crawford Is A $142 Million Left Fielder. Really. Now Don't Make Me Tell You Again.

The Red Sox agreed this winter to pay Carl Crawford a lot of money over the next seven years. And as Crawford begins the 2011 season poorly, Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe seems a bit too obsessed with the size of Crawford's contract:

February 18, 2011:
[Cameron] got on the telephone and tried to sell Crawford on Boston. ... Cameron's pitch, along with $142 million from the team, helped Crawford decide.
March 30, 2011:
Carl Crawford seems to be pressing a bit. That he has hit .208 in spring training is no big deal. But he seems to be attacking every ball with the intent of proving he's worth $142 million instead of just playing.
April 4, 2011:
Crawford seemed to be carrying the expectations of his $142 million contract with him to the plate.
April 6, 2011:
Their frustration is personified by $142 million left fielder Carl Crawford, who has two hits in 15 at-bats and has yet to score a run as a member of the Red Sox.
April 16, 2011:
Carl Crawford, their $142 million left fielder, was 0 for 5. He is down to .137 and looks desperately in need of a day off.
April 17, 2011:
The $142 million left fielder watched the Sox’ 4-1 win over the Blue Jays from the bench.
April 17, 2011:
[H]e looks lost at the plate right now, unable to get the ball out of the infield today and inexplicably bunting right at the pitcher. It's hard to feel sorry for a guy making that kind of money.
April 21, 2011:
Middle of the 6th: Red Sox 2, Angels 0
... The Red Sox then had $142 million left fielder Carl Crawford bunt ...
April 30, 2011:
The $142 million left fielder was on the bench for the second time in 13 games last night ...
He's just gotta have "$142 million left fielder" on AutoCorrect, right?

But, of course, it's not only Abraham. A sampling:

Dan Shaughnessy, Globe, April 1, 2011:
... and woe is the $142 million free agent who is slow out of the gate.
Nick Cafardo, Globe, April 2, 2011:
Carl Crawford, $142 million man, No. 3 hitter in the Boston lineup, left fielder extraordinaire, one of the fastest men in baseball — and, oh yeah, 0 for 4 with three strikeouts and five runners left on base yesterday in his Boston debut ...
Dan Shaughnessy, Globe, April 4, 2011:
Carl Crawford, your new free agent left fielder ... We could make a point about the notion of paying a guy $142 million to bat seventh, but we don't want to make things awkward.
Tyler Kepner, New York Times, April 6, 2011:
Crawford, the Red Sox' new $142 million left fielder, flipped aimlessly through a magazine ...
Bob Hohler, Globe, April 8, 2011:
... and the new $142 million left fielder, Carl Crawford, batting .174 and scoring one run in six games.
Brian MacPherson, Providence Journal, April 11, 2001:
Carl Crawford wasn't so lucky. The $142 million left fielder went hitless in five at-bats, and his batting average sank to .132.
Michael Vega, Globe, April 13, 2011:
"Yes, it's a lit­tle shocking," said Carl Crawford, the $142 million left field­er and leadoff hitter ...
Michael Vega, Globe, April 16, 2011:
No one seemed more frustrated than Crawford, who has yet to live up to the billing when he was signed to a seven-year, $142 million contract in December.
Nick Cafardo, Globe, April 17, 2011:
It's hard to evaluate the signings this early ... But was eight years, $142 million too much for Crawford?
Scott Lauber, Boston Herald, April 20, 2011:
On Tuesday, Crawford's longtime hitting instructor in Houston told the Herald that the Red Sox' $142 million left fielder was rushing his stride and his swing ...
Dan Shaughnessy, Globe, April 24, 2011:
He's certainly the first $142 million No. 8 hitter in baseball history ...
Nick Cafardo, Globe, April 24, 2011:
Can you blame a guy for taking $142 million from the Red Sox?
Nick Cafardo, Globe, April 28, 2011:
While Crawford's struggles continue, Boston's other wealthy acquisition, Adrian Gonzalez, is really cranking.


Anonymous said...

Wow! Great post. Let me translate what Peter Abraham is really saying:

"I may not have as much money as you, black man, but I have the power of the corporate media on my side. So you either perform in this game... or else feel the wrath of my repetitive, boring, cryptically-hateful typewriter. And, yes, I still use a typewriter. It reminds me of the days when there were less black players with tattoos in our game."

allan said...

This also reminds me of an old issue of Rolling Stone L has mentioned to me before. Late 70s, and every single item in the Random Notes section ended with (something like) "Mick Jagger was unavailable for comment."

Maybe Abraham should end every paragraph with "Carl Crawford is a $142 million left fielder" no matter what he is writing about.

Dr. Jeff said...

How about a new nickname "OFT" (One Forty Two)

Unknown said...

I swear these guys have ADD - the immediate moment defines reality - there is no big picture.

I hope you have fun juxtaposing these comments with the laudatory ones that will come when Crawford finds his swing. And the sad thing is that they won't feel any sense of embarrassment about their complete turnaround. I guess that's an upside of having ADD and no sense of shame.

RedSoxDiehard said...

Wait, I'm confused. How much money is Carl Crawford getting?

They should go back to the good old days of telling us about the NYT owning 17% of the team in every article.

allan said...

I like how it sounds like he's getting all that $ this year. It does seem selective in which players have their salaries referenced. Some do -- Drew, Crawford (now), maybe Lackey -- but some do not at all, even when they repeatedly stink up the joint.

Good old Cafardo lets us know that on APRIL 17 of the first of seven years (!) that "it's hard to evaluate the signing this early" but then he sort of does anyway, saying that the Sox might have paid too much money for what they are getting.

Vega does it, too, saying that Crawford "has yet to live up" to the hype. With Crawford's contract, that's like judging a marathon runner after the first 50 feet of the race.

allan said...

the immediate moment defines reality

That is a very good description of a sports columnist. Everything is present tense. On Friday, we're flying high and it's a clear line to the playoffs. A weekend sweep later, and on Monday morning, everything is totally fucked.

But Abraham is NOT a columnist and his references to Crawford are mostly in game stories.

Unknown said...

Another point: when it comes to talking about his salary, all these writers reference Crawford's 7-year contract, but when it comes to evaluating his performance, all they talk about is one month of major league play.

No one in their right mind would evaluate performance like that, except sports writers, I guess.

laura k said...

This also reminds me of an old issue of Rolling Stone L has mentioned to me before. Late 70s, and every single item in the Random Notes section ended with (something like) "Mick Jagger was unavailable for comment."

Context: readers had complained to the tune of "Does Mick Jagger have to be mentioned in EVERY Random Notes?"

So the editors wrote Jagger in to ... every Random Notes item. "Mick Jagger was not present." "Mick Jagger was not available for comment." "Mick Jagger had nothing to do with this." Hilarious.

Unlike the chorus of bitter detractors quoted in this post.