'As it should be': Crisp comfy back in Cleveland

'As it should be': Crisp comfy back in Cleveland

CLEVELAND -- Newly acquired outfielder Coco Crisp couldn't help but feel nostalgic when he strolled into the Indians' clubhouse at Progressive Field on Friday morning. After all, it was the first Major League clubhouse he called home.

"You walk in here, you're familiar with the way the clubhouse is laid out," Crisp said prior to the series opener with the Marlins. "So it's not like I have to walk around here and search out new areas and try to familiarize myself with where you go for certain things. That plays a big role in being comfortable. ... It's nice to be back here."

Crisp made his big league debut in 2002 with the Indians, and he spent four seasons with them before going to Boston in 2005. It's because of that familiarity that Crisp believes the transition should go smoothly.

The former A's outfielder, who's in his 15th big league season, spent the last seven years in Oakland. That type of environmental change could often have a negative effect on a veteran, especially one who has never been involved in an in-season trade.

"I thought it was going to be weird," Crisp said. "Because this is the first time I've had a midseason trade and been involved one of those. So I thought it was going to be a little weird. But it just brings back old memories, good memories. So I'm excited."

Crisp believes the return to Cleveland could be very beneficial. He can remember where everything is including the video room, which was one of the first stops he made on Friday. Crisp pulled up old footage from when he last played in an Indians uniform.

"The good thing about here is that they have some of my at-bats from back in 2005, when I was rolling," Crisp said. "So I was able to come in here and look at those and compare it to my batting stance and the way that things were then versus how things have transpired in my batting stance since my neck injury."

Crisp is also familiar with manager Terry Francona, with whom he spent time playing under in Boston. The two reconnected in Francona's office when Crisp first arrived Friday, and they shared old tales.

"I think you always concern yourself with a transition with a player this late in the year," Francona said. "But I think with Coco, he played here, this is the team he came up with, and I was with him for three years. I think Coco's going to feel a part of our team real quick, and that's a good thing."

Crisp's transition should be a smooth one. He is even staying at the very same hotel he stayed in when he was first called up. The only difference is the person who works the door at his hotel is no longer there.

"When I first got called up, I stayed at the Hyatt Regency, and there was a guy out front that said, 'As it should be,'" Crisp said. "Every time I left the hotel, he would say that to me, and that was the familiarity that was brought back to me. I'm back there again, it's like I got called up. The only bad part is that guy's not there. I was hoping that he was there."

Regardless, Crisp is a Cleveland Indian again. As it should be.

Shane Jackson is a reporter for MLB.com based in Cleveland. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.