Since coming off the disabled list, Carl Crawford has struggled at the plate. Despite hitting below .200 for much of his time back, manager Don Mattingly stuck with Crawford as the everyday option in left field.
Crawford’s three hits on Tuesday gave him his third consecutive multi-hit game and increased his batting average to .256 on the season. Although Crawford had yet to find his footing at the plate, Mattingly said the decision to continue starting the left fielder was due to how well he put the bat on the ball before being injured.
Following the Los Angeles Dodgers’ win on Tuesday, Adrian Gonzalez expressed his confidence in Crawford’s ability, via Joe Morgan of MLB.com:
He’s an aggressive hitter, he’s attacking the strike zone and taking advantage of pitchers’ mistakes,” first baseman Adrian Gonzalez said. “He had a great game [Monday]. He had a good series in Milwaukee. When he gets going, he’s a guy that can really be a force because he hits pitchers’ pitches for hits and then he takes advantage of their mistakes and drives those balls and he does a lot of good things on the bases, so it’s good to see him rolling.”
With the Dodgers facing a left-hander, Mattingly continued with his trend of resting the left-handed batters in his lineup. That included Dee Gordon, which resulted in Crawford batting leadoff.
Crawford struck out in his first at-bat of the game and then reached safely in his next four plate appearances. With the Dodgers trailing 2-1 in the fifth inning, Crawford doubled to the right-center gap and the Dodgers had two runners in scoring position with one out.
The Dodgers went on to score two runs in the inning and never relinquished the lead. In his last 10 games, Crawford is hitting .351 and has been particularly successful on the road.
Including two games played in Anaheim, Crawford is hitting .440 with a .790 OPS during the Dodgers road trip. He’ll have two more games to add to his success before the team returns to Chavez Ravine.
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