Carl Crawford, Yankees Have Talks
It turns out now that the Yankees are spending some time courting free-agent outfielder Carl Crawford. Before you get terribly excited -- or extremely upset, depending on your outlook on the Bronx Bombers – you should know that New York is likely talking to Crawford as a backup plan in case it is not able to sign Lee. The Yankees are not looking to sign both Lee and Crawford.
The Yankees already have Nick Swisher, Brett Gardner and Curtis Granderson in the outfield, with early plans to use Jorge Posada at DH next season. With a crowded outfield already, Lee is the Yankees' top priority. There just isn't any room for Crawford at this time.
Don't think for a moment, however, that New York won't attempt to shuffle its roster around if Lee signs with another team. Crawford hit .307 last year with 47 stolen bases and drove in 90 runs. Those numbers would make it easy for the Yankees to decide to fit him in somewhere.
New York's conversations with Crawford might also be an effort to drive the price up on the free agent, who met with the Boston Red Sox early this week.