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Royals Interested in Mark Ellis

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All the former Royals return! Can a contract offer to Terrence Long be far behind?

USA TODAY Sports

The Royals continue to be active participants in one of the craziest Hot Stove winters in recent memory, with Ken Rosenthal reporting that they are interested in former Dodgers second baseman Mark Ellis. The 36 year old Ellis is a former Royals farmhand who was shipped to Oakland before his MLB career got started in the Roberto Hernandez/Johnny Damon trade way back in 2001. He has been an exemplary defender throughout his career (although how he has gone with a Gold Glove is a mystery). His days as being a very productive hitter are over, but he can still draw a walk at times, and hit a competent .270/.323/.351 last year for the Dodgers. Coupled with some stellar defense, that was enough for a 3 WAR season for Ellis, which would represent a huge upgrade for the Royals at second base.

Ellis earned $5.25 million last year, and the Dodgers declined his $5.75 million option for 2014. Its unclear as to what he's looking for, but a 1 to 2 year contract around $4-5 million per year is probably in the ballpark. The Rays and Dodgers are said to be the other bidders but with Ben Zobrist (Tampa Bay) and Alexander Guerrero (Los Angeles) already in place, Ellis might prefer to come to KC for the playing time.