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Rockies INF Ellis stellar in debut with Rockies
DENVER (AP) - For nearly a decade, Mark Ellis dutifully followed the rules in Oakland by donning white shoes.
The shoes, maybe even more than the purple pinstripe uniform, will take some getting used to as the longtime Oakland infielder settles into his new life in the Mile High City.
And looking snazzy in those colorful cleats.
“It’s funny not seeing white shoes. You look down and you’re always used to white shoes,” Ellis said. “But it’s nice.”
He’s hoping a change of scenery can break him out of a season-long slump. Ellis hit .217 with one homer and 16 RBIs in 62 games with the A’s.
He’s off to a solid start, finishing a triple shy of the cycle Friday and driving in three runs.
“It’s been a whirlwind couple of days,” said Ellis, who hit a two-run homer in the fifth. “Just see the ball and hit the ball. That’s what I try to do. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.”
The Rockies are counting on Ellis to bring stability at second base, something the team has lacked all season. They’ve trotted out Chris Nelson, Jonathan Herrera, Eric Young Jr. and Jose Lopez, who’s since been let go.
The job belongs to Ellis.
“This is a proven major league player with a proven resume _ a very, very capable guy,” Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. “I don’t know how this is going to play out, but I do know this: For us to go out and make an acquisition like this as early as it has been done, I’ve seen situations like this play themselves out where it ends up being an incredible shot in the arm for a ballclub.”
“That’s my goal,” Ellis said. “That’s definitely a good team, and it will be fun to compete against them.”
Any secrets he can reveal?
Ellis had plenty of mixed emotions departing Oakland. But given all the stars who have left town in recent years, he wasn’t completely surprised by the move.
“I kind of figured something was going to happen in Oakland. Somebody asked me yesterday if I expected to get traded, and when you don’t get traded for 10 years, you don’t really expect to get traded, but I kind of anticipated it a little bit,” Ellis said. “It was a tough day. It was sad. You spend all that time with people and it’s tough.
“I wanted to get here as soon as possible and start this new chapter. I was excited when I heard it was Colorado. If I had to leave Oakland, this was one of the spots, if not the spot, that I wanted to go.”
By Donald Lambro
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