A fan yelled racist stuff at Carl Crawford on his rehab assignment

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Carl Crawford is bound to take a lot of boos and jeers from Red Sox fans until he starts producing for the big club. But one dude in New Hampshire took it up (or down) a notch during Crawford’s rehab game against the New Hampshire Fisher Cats in Manchester last night:

The fan — who Crawford claimed uttered “a racial slur” — routinely made his feelings known with regard to the left fielder’s $142 million contract and whether he was earning it. The heckler’s message: overrated, overpaid …

… “Talking about that guy, he actually called me a racial slur to begin the game,” said Crawford … “He was the only one I had a problem with. People in Boston don’t even do that. So I don’t know what that was about. It’s not that bad in Boston, like that.”

I’m sure it made the fan feel pretty good and pretty clever. After which he drove home and resumed his miserable, pathetic life and continued to channel his own frustrations and mental limitations into hostility towards others and will eventually die never having come close to understanding even a scintilla of what life is about nor experiencing true human affection.

Steven Matz likely to start season on DL; Zack Wheeler to adhere to innings limit

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Mets manager Terry Collins said on Wednesday, “It’s unlikely that [Steven Matz] will start the season with us.” The final spot in the Mets’ starting rotation will go to either Zack Wheeler or Seth Lugo, Newsday’s Marc Carig reports.

On Wheeler’s innings limit, assistant GM John Ricco said, “There’s going to be some number but we don’t exactly know what that is.” Wheeler missed the last two seasons after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Neither Wheeler nor Lugo have had terrific springs as each carries a 5.11 and 5.56 Grapefruit League ERA, respectively. However, Carig notes that Wheeler has impressed simply by appearing healthy and brandishing a fastball that once again sits in the mid- to high-90’s. Lugo, meanwhile, proved crucial to the Mets last year, posting a 2.67 ERA across eight starts and nine relief appearances.

Rockies sign 30-year lease to stay in Coors Field

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Nick Groke of the Denver Post reports that the Rockies agreed to a $200 million, 30-year lease with the Metropolitan Baseball Stadium District, which is the state division that owns Coors Field. As part of the deal, the Rockies will lease and develop a plot of land south of the stadium, which will cost the team $125 million for 99 years.

As Groke points out, had the Rockies not reached a deal by Thursday, March 30, the lease would have rolled over for five more years.

Rockies owner Dick Monfort issued a statement, saying, “We are proud that Coors Field will continue to be a vital part of a vibrant city, drawing fans from near and far and making our Colorado residents proud.”

The Rockies moved into Coors Field in 1995. It is the National League’s third oldest stadium. In that span of time, the Rockies have made the playoffs three times, the last coming in 2009 when they lost in the NLDS to the Phillies. The Rockies were swept in the 2007 World Series by the Red Sox.