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Terry Francona: We Didn't Sign Carl Crawford To Hit Eighth

Illustration for article titled Terry Francona: We Didnt Sign Carl Crawford To Hit Eighth

Every morning, the fine folks at Sports Radio Interviews sift through the a.m. drive-time chatter to bring you the best interviews with coaches, players, and personalities across the sports landscape. Today: no one on the Red Sox is hitting, but some are hitting less than others.

Terry Francona joined WEEI in Boston on the Big Show to talk about how it would feel to get to .500, whether or not he is getting caught up in how they started, how good Dustin Pedroia is for his team and how he became the player that he is, and talks about batting Crawford so low in the order.

How it would feel to finally get to .500:
"Unfortunately it would feel pretty good. That's not what we're shooting for but I've got to admit it would feel pretty good."


Whether or not he gets caught up in early season struggles:
"I try not to. I try not to look at what are you doing in April? What are your doing in May? Those are artificial deadlines. What our record is is what our record is. But it does feel better to play better baseball. Guys are hitting .180 but they seem to be going up. Like Crawford right now. I guarantee Crawford feels better about himself. His batting average isn't where he wants it to be but he knows he's going in the right direction. I kinda feel like that's where we are."

How Dustin Pedroia became the player that he is now:
"How much time do you have? I wish I could sit here and tell you that we did this or we did that. That's probably not the case. He just needed a little bit of experience, he went through the minor leagues pretty quick, he got some at-bats, he learned how to play professional baseball, and he's unbelievable. He wills himself, but you have to have talent to do what he does. You can't be Rookie of the Year, MVP, and all the things that he does without talent, but he wills himself. You guys have heard me say so many times that when we play the Yankees I don't like it when Jeter has a lot to do with the outcome of the game because that's probably how they feel about him a little bit. I know he's got some age on him but still he's a smart player, he gets himself in the right place, and that play that he made against Oakland where he flipped the ball to the plate, those are plays that special players make and that's kind of what Pedey does. He just finds a way to get himself into position defensively where he can make a play, make a defensive play, make a base running play, and he's going to impact the game for us somehow, some way. I'm glad he's on our team. He's a special guy."

On the lack of power being shown by Adrian Gonzalez:
"I think we had a pretty good handle on him coming in. Obviously you're not going to make a trade of that magnitude and have too many surprises. I don't think it's been a big issue with me because I know he's going to hit them and he's been hitting the ball in the gap a lot, they just haven't been home runs. I hate to talk about home runs because you start to talk about that and they hear it. Then they want to hit home runs and I think you cause more problems than you help. He's too good of a hitter. Once he finds his groove and he's getting hits and extra base hits, he will hit some home runs."

On Carl Crawford and where he's batting in the lineup:
"We don't want him to be there. That's not why we signed him to hit eight for us. He will be up at the top somewhere. These things have a funny way of working themselves out. If I'm sitting here in a week or two and can't figure out where to play guys because they're all doing well, what a problem to have. That's not normally the case."


This post, written by Chris Fedor, appears courtesy of Sports Radio Interviews. For the complete highlights of the interview, as well as audio, click here.

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