After nearly six weeks on the disable list while recovering from a sprained ankle, Carl Crawford was activated from the disabled list Thursday.
The 32-year-old left fielder sat by as Matt Kemp assumed what’s become his position in left field and with Clayton Kershaw throwing a complete game, a pinch-hit opportunity didn’t present itself for Crawford.
Manager Don Mattingly has expressed his intention of keeping the Los Angeles Dodgers outfield moving in the same direction it has since Crawford was placed on the DL — Kemp in left, Ethier and Scott Van Slyke splitting time in center and Yasiel Puig in right.
According to Dylan Hernandez of the LA Times, Crawford understands Mattingly’s desire to stick with the status quo:
There’s not too much I can say to that. Guys have been playing extremely well and got back into first place. I just have to be ready for when my number’s called and try to stay sharp enough so I can play well for when I do get in the game.”
Crawford added he doesn’t want to gripe over playing time because of how well the team is doing:
It’s a situation where we’re winning, so you definitely don’t want to be the guy who’s complaining about dumb stuff,” Crawford said. “I’m not that guy. I just want to be here to cheer everyone on.”
Crawford’s latest remarks on the crowded outfield are a stark contrast to the frustration he expressed in June. At the time, Crawford questioned where he would fit in with Kemp now in left field and claimed what the players were told differed than what actually transpired on the field.
The Dodgers fell behind the San Francisco Giants in the National League West by as many as 9.5 games during Crawford’s absence. They’ve since erased the deficit and now hold a 1.0 game lead in the standings entering Friday.
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