Roger Mooney covers the Tampa Bay Rays for The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com and News Channel 8. He has covered the Rays since their first season in 1998, including 11 years for the Bradenton Herald. Roger has also covered Florida, South Florida and Florida State football, the Bucs and the Lightning.
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Crawford: I want to stay a Ray
Posted Apr 2, 2008 by Marc Lancaster
Updated Apr 2, 2008 at 04:54 PM
BALTIMORE—Carl Crawford said in the statement released by the team yesterday as his $8.25 million option for 2009 was picked up that he would like to stick around the Rays for a “long time.” Asked to expand on those thoughts this afternoon, he reiterated his desire to remain a Ray indefinitely.
“Most definitely I would like to stay here with the Rays; this is the only organization I know,” he said.
His motivation to stay isn’t just rooted in familiarity. He also would like to be a part of winning with the Rays after suffering through so much losing over the years.
“I’d hate to leave right when the getting is good,” said Crawford. “You’ve been around for all the bad stuff, you want to be around for the good part, too, and it looks like the good part is coming ahead. I definitely want to be a part of that, so I’d hate to be out right when the team starts to win more games.”
He added that he hadn’t given much thought to an extension of his current contract, which is now guaranteed through 2009 with a club option for 2010, because the end of that deal seems “so far away” in his mind. He said he hasn’t asked his agent to initiate talks with the Rays about a new deal, but naturally would be all ears if the Rays came to him first.
“Of course I’d want to listen,” he said. “Everybody’s getting extended these days, it seems like, so I’d definitely listen.”
Crawford certainly would be worth far more on the open market than what the Rays are currently paying him, but he gave no hint of regret about his current deal.
“I wouldn’t change a thing,” he said. “That first contract took care of me and my family for the rest of our lives, so I’ll be living off that stuff for the rest of my life. I’d never argue about that. That situation just put me in a position for where I’m at now, so now I can be at ease.”