Well, coming into the 2011 season I was pretty much cuckoo for Coco. In retrospect, my craziness, seems a bit, well, crazy. The A’s enter the offseason with the possibility that all three of their 2011 starting outfielders will be gone by the start of next year.
Josh Willingham, Coco Crisp, and David DeJesus are all figured to receive offers to play elsewhere outside the confines of the o.Co Coliseum this winter. If I’m Josh Willingham, I’m looking for the next flight out of Oakland, period.
But Crisp, meanwhile, remains the most likely candidate of the three eligible free agents to return to Oakland. The A’s and Crisp seem like a perfect fit, and Crisp is seemingly content with playing in Oakland. Or so it seems that way.
Many see Crisp as a perfect fit in San Francisco, and many figure that Crisp will want to test the free agent market after setting a career high in stolen bases with 49 in 2011. His .264/.314/.379 slash line, down from 2010′s totals, is still pretty decent for 31-year old. Crisp, like Willingham, should generate some interest in this year’s free agent market.
It’s really up to Oakland whether or not they want Crisp back for 2012. The A’s, if the money’s right, would like to have Crisp back, but aren’t willing to exceed their budget for any single player. That’s why Crisp’s future in Oakland remains “iffy.”
Coupled with Jemile Weeks atop Oakland’s lineup, Crisp can still pose a threat on the base-paths. The A’s, a team that has evolved since the Moneyball days where stealing bases was considered genocide, have begun to show a reliance on small-ball as a way to generate runs. Crisp remains an important catalyst in Oakland’s lineup.
Lacking power, the A’s are a team that is forced to make do with what they’ve got. Keeping Crisp, while not entirely ideal to the team’s emphasis on grooming young players, is likely a priority in the A’s front office right now.
What do you think? Should the A’s re-sign Crisp for 2012? Or should they embrace the future and give guys like Michael Taylor a shot next year? Sound off below!