29 year old Mark Ellis could probably win a Gold Glove if he could ever stay healthy.Â Ellis played in 123 games for the A’s at 2B last season and he showed fantastic range and only made 2 errors all season.Â He didn’t hit as well as he did in 2005 (.316, .861 OPS), but he wasn’t totally awful either.Â Ellis hit .249 with 11 homers, 52 RBIs and a .704 OPS last year.Â Look for Ellis to hit a lot better than last season but not as good as he did in 2005.Â Defense is his main contribution to the A’s and that will still be the case this season, and if he plays in 140+ games….his glove will be Golden.
31 year old Marco Scutaro is an unsung hero on the A’s as he backs up both Bobby Crosby and Mark Ellis and that is a full time job.Â He hit a solid .266 with 5 homers, 41 RBIs and a .747 OPS in 117 games last season.Â Scutaro only made 1 error in 37 games at 2B last season for the A’s and he showed decent range there.Â Look for Scutaro to be an important player for the A’s this season as either Crosby/Ellis will probably miss time this season to injury.
The A’s brought in 24 year old Donnie Murphy from the Kansas City Royals.Â Murphy only hit .249 with 14 homers, 45 RBIs and a .737 OPS in 94 games in AA ball.Â He last played in the majors with the Royals in 2005 and he’s played in 39 major league games in his career and has a career batting average of .163 with a .497 OPS.Â The A’s would likely have to have some major injuries before Murphy got a chance, but with the injury history of the A’s infield he could get a chance at some point.Â
Soon to be 36 year old Lou Merloni has been brought in to compete for a bench job on the A’s.Â He played in 9 games for the Indians last season (3 at 2B) and he hit .211 with a .549 OPS.Â Merloni did play in 91 games in AAA last season and he hit .285 with a .776 OPS.Â Merloni has a career average of .271 in 9 years in the majors, so he’s a great insurance policy for the A’s.
27 year old Antonio Perez could also get some playing time at 2B, but he only played 2 games there last season.