General Manager John Mozeliak had been saying all along that he wanted a right-handed batting infielder for the St. Louis Cardinals, with both apparent 2B Kolten Wong and 3B to be Matt Carpenter batting left.
Mark Ellis, formerly the Dodgers' 2B, was the best available bat, in all likelihood, after the Marlins signed former Cardinal Rafael Furcal with the intent of moving him from SS to 2B.
Ellis is primarily here as an offensive option to Wong and to break him in slowly after his cup of coffee at the end of last year wasn't too good. But, he has on occasion played 3B in the past and can presumably spot Carpenter on the occasional day off.
The only question I have left is, is his contract more, or less, than the $3.5M Miami gave Furcal? Given that the Dodgers turned down a $5.75M option on Ellis, if it is more, it's probably not much more.
And, with that, it's time for spring training and seeing what Wong, Oscar Taveras and others can do.
Up date, Dec. 18: I'm wrong, and a bit sadly. It IS $5.75M, the same as the team option the Dodgers rejected.