Crawford gets it right against a lefty

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Crawford gets it right against a lefty

By Jessica Camerato
CSNNE.com

BOSTON - The stats were against Carl Crawford.

He entered Fridays game against the Oakland Athletics batting .106 against lefties this season.

He was also hitless with the bases loaded and two outs.

After one swing of the bat, he proved those numbers didnt mean anything with the game on the line.

With the Red Sox trailing 6-5 in the bottom of the seventh inning, Crawford worked lefty reliever Brian Fuentes to a full count. On the sixth straight sinker, he connected on a hit to center field to drive in Adrian Gonzalez and Kevin Youkilis for the game-tying and go-ahead runs.

I was just trying to work him a little bit, Crawford said after the Red Sox 8-6 win. We had bases loaded so he started off with two balls and I decided I was just going to wait until he threw a strike. The count ended up getting to 3-2, I had to swing and I was able to find a hole.

He added, Youve got the bases loaded with two outs, you cant really play around too much right there. So you know at some point he has to throw you a pitch where you can hit, so you kind of know that and use that to your advantage.

Crawfords at-bat helped the Red Sox snap a four-game losing streak and record their 12th come-from-behind victory this season. His only hit of the game got the job done.

He worked the count really well and got deep, said Terry Francona. And by no means did he crush that ball, but he stayed on it enough and it found the outfield grass and made everybody happy.

Crawford came close to knocking one out of the park earlier in the game, hitting a deep flyball to right field that was caught by David DeJesus. That narrowly missed tying the game at 4-4.

But he was happy to connect when he did later in the game.

Its kind of getting to the point where I think Im just about to try to get on top of everything, he said with a laugh.

Regardless of how Crawford had hit earlier in the game - or at any point in the season, for that matter - his teammates had confidence with him at the plate.

Thats how you get out of a jam, said David Ortiz. Hes the man tonight. Thats the guy you want in there. Im so happy for him.

When told of Ortizs praise, Crawford smiled. Well, Im glad he had a confidence in me. Im just trying to help deliver for the team and do everything to help win the game.

Jessica Camerato is on Twitter at http:twitter.comjcameratonba

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"My career had fallen into an abyss because I was so complacent with things that I had already accomplished," Sandoval said. "I did not work hard in order to achieve more and to remain at the level of the player that I am and that I can be."

After dealing Travis Shaw to the Brewers, Sandoval is expected to be the Red Sox primary third baseman in 2017.

"I am not taking anything for granted," he said. "I am here to work hard. I'm not thinking about the position or not. I am starting from scratch, and I am here to show what I can do on the field."

The 30-year-old says he’s following a “really strict routine” this offseason, and it shows. In a recent photo, Sandoval appears noticeably thinner. Sandoval says his wife giving birth to “Baby Panda” has served as inspiration.

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