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Coco Crisp (Covelli Loyce Crisp) was born on November 1, 1979 in Los Angeles, California. He made his Major League debut on August 15, 2002 for the Cleveland Indians. In 2003, his rookie year, he hit .266 with 3 home runs and 27 RBI. Crisp has played for the Cleveland Indians and Boston Red Sox over the course of his 5 year career.
Crisp was sent from the St. Louis Cardinals to the Cleveland Indians to complete a deal for Chuck Finley in 2002. At the time he was a 22 year old in AA who had the potential for double digit HR's and 30 steals. It was in Cleveland that Crisp got his first chance to play and blossomed into a regular major leaguer. After the 2005 season the Indians used Crisp as the centerpiece in a deal that landed them Andy Marte, one of the game's best prospects. The Boston Red Sox were in search of a centerfielder and leadoff hitter and were happy to acquire him.
Most people believe that Coco Crisp's best season was 2005, when he slugged 16 home runs, hit for a .300 average and knocked in 69 runs.
The nickname Coco comes from his grandmother. His given name is Covelli Crisp.
Crisp is a good all-around ballplayer who is an asset to his team with his defense and offensive. He can hit for a decent AVG with enough power to hit 15 homers and 40 doubles. His speed is also a plus. He's still learning how to be a better baserunner, but he is able to cover a lot of range in the field. He has improved in every area of the game every year he is in the league.
In many ways, Crisp is a throwback: he doesn't wear batting gloves, chokes up on the bat when he swings, likes to drag bunt, and sprays line drives all over the field. Despite his aggressiveness early in the count, he can hit for a decent on base percentage, but can also be beaten by fastballs. On the basepaths, Crisp is a more than capable base stealer and knows how to capatilize on these skills, though he will occasionally make poor decesions. He has worked on his basestealing in recent years, and has become an asset in that department (he swiped 22 bags last year and was caught stealing only 4 times). In the field, Crisp is a phenominal fielder who is able to utilize his speed to cover a lot of ground in the outfield. His primary position is in center field, though he has played in left in the past, a position where his extremley weak throwing arm is less of a subtraction from his overall defensive performance.
- Selected by St. Louis Cardinals in the 7th round of the free-agent draft (June 2, 1999 - signed June 7, 1999).
- Traded by St. Louis Cardinals to Cleveland Indians (August 7, 2002) completing trade in which Cleveland Indians traded Chuck Finley to St. Louis Cardinals in exchange for Luis Garcia and a player to be named later (July 19, 2002).
- Traded by Cleveland Indians with David Riske and Josh Bard to Boston Red Sox in exchange for Guillermo Mota, Andy Marte, Kelly Shoppach, cash and a player to be named later (January 27, 2006); Cleveland Indians received Randy Newsom (July 21, 2006).
- Crisp went through 465 games (4 1/2 seasons) before getting hit by a pitch for the first time in his career.
- Crisp and teammate Julio Lugo became the first Boston teammates since Tris Speaker and Al Janvrin in 1914 to steal 25+ bases in the same season.
- He is also one of the few active baseball players who do not use batting gloves.