Crawford late scratch for Yanks game

Crawford a late scratch vs. Yanks

TAMPA, Fla. -- Carl Crawford was a late scratch for Saturday's game against the Yankees at Legends Field.

Crawford "just came up a little tight today," Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "I just think the field was a little wet yesterday, and sometimes when you run on soft ground, that can happen. So his legs were a little bit tight today. I just took him out of the lineup."

Friday's Rays-Blue Jays game was delayed by a downpour and it drizzled throughout the contest.

Maddon said Crawford told Rays athletic trainer Ron Porterfield about his condition when he reported to the clubhouse at Progress Energy Park early Saturday morning, and Porterfield relayed the news to Maddon.

"His legs are just a little tight from working out yesterday," Maddon said. "I think the softness of the ground [had a lot to do with it]. Again, had it been different circumstances -- regular season, playoff situation -- he's in there. There's just no reason to push him. I just think the soft ground had an impact on him."

Maddon was not definite about Crawford's playing on Sunday against the Tigers in St. Petersburg.

"Yeah, I'm thinking he'll play tomorrow," Maddon said. "If not, for sure the next day."

The Rays are off on Monday, so it would not be a surprise to see Crawford sit out Sunday as well. Throughout Maddon's tenure as manager, he has looked for ways to rest Crawford and has often given him the day off heading into an off-day.

Crawford is hitting .333 in nine games this spring and the reigning American League stolen-base champion has three steals.

Bill Chastain is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.