NEW YORK -- Speculation has been rampant since the beginning of Spring Training that Carl Crawford will end up with the Yankees in 2011.
Crawford is in the final year of his contract with the Rays. If he does not negotiate an extension during the season, he will be a free agent at the end of it. All along, Crawford has maintained that he will address his pending free agency once the season is over, but Wednesday was the Tampa Bay's first game in New York this season, so the Rays' left fielder was fair game for questions about his future.
Crawford handled all the attention well, smiling throughout the approximately five-minute session.
After reporters danced around the obvious, Crawford was asked how much time he spends thinking about free agency.
"I don't think about it at all with this team," Crawford answered. "Everybody knows when you're winning, it just lets you be carefree all the time where you don't have to think about stuff too much. When you're in a situation like this, it's just easy to get on with your day."
The more direct follow-up asked him how much time he spends thinking about the possibility he could be wearing pinstripes in 2011.
"I don't really think about it at all," Crawford said. "It's something I don't have to think about it right now. I'll have plenty of time to think about that [later]."