Soon after making my last post, I drove to the Post Office. I knew it would be closed today (Happy Birthday America!), but I had not checked it yesterday. Sure enough, I had a package. This one came from the World’s Biggest St. Louis Cardinals fan, purveyor of the Cards on Cards blog, Madding.
He packed an envelope full of awesome Rays cards, including numbered inserts, parallels, first day issues and another jersey card. Like the Stale Gum trade, this one is going to be posted in multiple parts. I am gonna start with the game-used memorabilia card, because this card is now the 8th jersey card I own of this particular player. I just named him the starting left-fielder on the All Troll Team; he will likely be named to his 3rd All Star game next week. He is leading the American League in stolen bases with 40. He set a record earlier this year with an unprecedented 6 steals in a single game. He currently sits at 110th on the All Time steals list, one behind Ryne Sandberg, but he is only 11 swipes away from catching Rod Carew and entering the top 100 All-Time in that category. He has led the American League in steals 4 times and is on his way to the 5th. Last year he hit his 1,000th career hit becoming the 8th player ever to hit 1000 and steal 250 bases before the age of 27. He has paced the league in triples 3 times and is the Rays franchise leader in that category as well as stolen bases, runs, hits, total bases, extra base hits and career batting average. Since World War 2, only 18 players have had more hits than him before the age of 27, the list includes Al Kaline, Robin Yount, Hank Aaron and Albert Pujols. He is Carl Crawford and he is establishing himself as one of the top players in baseball. He is the catalyst for the Rays. He gets on base and makes things happen. His speed throws pitchers off of their rhythm and his aggressiveness on the bases has been contagious to his teammates with BJ Upton and Jason Bartlett both running more than ever. He can hit the long ball, too. Almost 80 in his career and when he hits them, that gets contagious too. He added two more home runs last year in the World Series; his first was a solo shot in game 1 off of Cole Hammels. It was the first ever World Series homerun by a Rays player. He also was a perfect 7 for 7 in stolen base attempts in the postseason last year; the Rays as a team set a postseason record with 24 steals total. He tied a postseason record himself with his 5 hit game in Game 4 of the ALCS against Boston. He was 5-5 in that game with two doubles and a triple.
The card that Madding set me is from the 2008 Topps Baseball Series 1. This card highlights Crawford setting a Rays record for hits in one month, when he had 50 hits in the month of August in 2007. He batted .388 with 3 homers in 29 games. He hit safely in 26 of those games. The record he broke was 44, set by Aubrey Huff in 2002. It was during this 2007 season that Crawford also became the Rays All Time hits leader. He is the 27th player in MLB history to collect 50 hits in one month.
Thanks for the card Madding!!! I will post the other thousand or so cards you sent me over the next few weeks.
Go Crawford! Go Rays!!! Troll out.