Carl Crawford has already batted in five different locations in the lineup during his first season with the Red Sox.
During Thursday afternoon’s game against the Angels, NESN’s Peter Gammons admitted that he’s warming up to the idea of Crawford trying another spot: The five hole.
Gammons reasoned that Crawford would be batting in front of hitters like David Ortiz and J.D. Drew, allowing the patience of both lefties to help him utilize his elite speed.
The Hall of Fame writer also contends that he could score from first on doubles down the line and potentially distract opposing pitchers from hitters six through nine in the Sox’ batting order.
Crawford set career highs in home runs (19), RBI (90) and slugging percentage (.495) last year in Tampa Bay and believes in his ability to produce runs.
The most significant issue with the proposal is that Crawford has never had an at-bat from the five hole in his career, and it’s the only lineup location in which he has no experience.
He only has three combined at-bats in the four and six holes, meaning the speedster has had minimal time in the middle third of any lineup.
Crawford entered Thursday with seven hits in his last 17 at-bats, raising his average near the Mendoza Line at .193.
The Sox’ $142 winter signing only has five stolen bases in just seven attempts this season.