Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Carl Crawford Arrives Optimistic, but not Kazmir-Like.

The gang's not quite all here yet, but they're getting close. Carl Crawford reported to Rays camp this morning leaving only Jonny Gomes, Carlos Pena, Elliot Johnson, Jon Weber, Willy Aybar, Joel Guzman and Juan Salas left to report. The last three are expected to have Visa problems and should arrive later on.

CC is reportedly in the best shape of his career and is poised to have a big season for a much improved Rays team. The biggest difference to Crawford is the atmosphere, as he was quoted by The St. Petersburg Times as saying:

"I just feel like it's going to be a little more peaceful this year, more at ease. I think it will be more at ease. Not so much crazy stuff. You just get the feeling it's about everybody wanting to come out and play good baseball this year. I'm done, you know I'm not really a drama person, so I'm kinda glad stuff just seems a little smoother right now.''

Crawford also added that he is excited for the new season and was surprised by the Delmon Young/Matt Garza deal, but thinks the deal is good for both teams. However, Crawford wouldn't go as far as Ace Scott Kazmir who last week said:"What's possible? Play in October, that's possible.'' Crawford offered a more realistic look at the '08 season, again from the St. Pete Times, Crawford said the team was "a long way from October" and should focus first on a .500 season. "This is probably the best team they've ever put together and we all know that and I think we want to go out and show people,'' he said.