If Ellis has his way, he'll make it an 11th year. His two-year, $11 million contract is on the verge of expiring, and it's unlikely his $6 million team option will be picked up given Ellis hasn't made gains with a bat that showed promise from a three-year span from 2005-07.
In those three years, Ellis appeared in a combined 396 games, hitting .280/.345/.435. However, since, the 33-year-old is at .253/.322/.374 in 324 games, missing a lengthy period of time in his most recent three seasons. Even with an impeccable fielding reputation, $6 million in the current environment seems a bit steep for the righty.
"They're going to do what they want to do," Ellis told the San Jose Mercury News of the A's. "Obviously I like it here. This is where I want to be. I just do what I can to help the team win, and that stuff will work itself out."
Even if the A's decline Ellis' option, they may want him back regardless with no clear-cut replacement. Adam Rosales is viewed as a utilityman by the club and there are no prospects knocking on the door. "We need him," catcher Kurt Suzuki said. "He's consistent defensively, and he's going to hit and provide leadership. I definitely want him back."
"We need him," catcher Kurt Suzuki said. "He's consistent defensively, and he's going to hit and provide leadership. I definitely want him back."Ellis' leadership and work ethic is another check in his favor, as assistant GM David Forst says "Mark's value has been more than what he does on the field."
One thing that may stand in the way of Ellis' return is a need to increase the power output of the team .
One certain power-hitter who is on the verge of his fourth straight 30-homer campaign (and his rookie year coming in at 27 blasts) is a second baseman and is available for the right price -- Dan Uggla. Making $7.8 million, Uggla has one more year of arbitration before hitting free agency and may be just what the doctor ordered for Oakland.
-- Evan Brunell
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