OAKLAND -- The A's and Coco Crisp have agreed to a two-year contract extension through 2016 with a vesting option for the 2017 season.
The center fielder wouldn't have it any other way.
"These guys are my comrades," Crisp said Friday afternoon with a wave of his hand as the 2014 club gathered at the Coliseum on the eve of Saturday's FanFest. "It's a great group of guys. They've always got your back.
"I like the front office. And it's just close enough to my family (in Southern California) that I can see them a lot without having to spend a lot of money on tickets."
Crisp's money concerns should be abated some by the $22.75 million extension covering the years of 2015-16 with an option for an additional season.
Left fielder Yoenis Cespedes, who might be due for an extension of his own in a year's time, spoke for many of his teammates when he celebrated the signing of Crisp.
"This is very important," Cespedes said through an interpreter. "I don't know if I'll get the next extension, but I know it's a great signing. Coco, he's the key to this team."
The 34-year-old Crisp, the A's leadoff hitter for most of the past four seasons, said at the end of last season it was his wish to stay with the A's and work out a contract extension. His current contract carries through this season.
A career .272 hitter with 278 stolen bases, Crisp hit .261 with 22 doubles and a career-best 22 homers with 21 stolen bases last season, becoming the 10th player in A's franchise history with at least 20 homers and 20 steals in the same season.
The Crisp signing is the latest move by the A's front office in what has been a busy off-season. The club added depth in the bullpen with Jim Johnson, Luke Gregerson and Eric O'Flaherty, in the rotation with Scott Kazmir and Drew Pomeranz, in the outfield with Craig Gentry and Sam Fuld and in catcher Chris Gimenez and infielder Nick Punto brought in two skilled veteran backups.
"We lost a couple of key components in (closer) Grant Balfour and (starter) Bartolo Colon, but they've done a great job replacing them," Crisp said. "There are a lot of good pieces that will make this team way better. I'm happy."
Crisp will be 37 in his option year, and the A's have structured the vesting breakdown to make sure that he's healthy before the 2017 season is locked in. The option would vest if he gets to 550 plate appearances in 2016 or if he has 1,000 plate appearances combined over the 2015-16 seasons. It also would vest with 130 games played in 2016 or 260 games played in 2015-16 combined.
In addition, the contract doesn't vest if he finishes the 2016 season on the disabled list.
Crisp has finished just two of the last five years with as many at 130 games played, but he has reached at least 550 plate appearances in each of the last three seasons.
And while there have been concerns that he might be slowing down, the 2013 season saw Crisp average 3.03 total chances per game, the highest figure turned in by any outfielder in the major leagues and the best number for an A's outfielder in more than two decades.
"I think I should have been more strong mentally," he said in talking about his struggles in a mediocre 2013 season.
"We felt we had the pieces to go a long way and it hurt that we didn't," he said. "It's OK to be upset, but now it's time to get going again."
SPARKING THE OFFENSE
Coco Crisp's stats with A's:
Year Avg. R HR RBI SB
2010 .279 51 8 38 32
2011 .264 69 8 54 49
2012 .259 68 11 46 39
2013 .261 93 22 66 21