1. Mark Ellis
Update: Sunday, Dec. 15 at 1:48 p.m. ET
According to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com, Ellis has agreed to a one-year deal with the St. Louis Cardinals.
It's presumed that Ellis will help provide insurance and help complement highly-regarded prospect Kolten Wong at second base. Wong will be given an opportunity to start full-time now that the Cardinals have moved Matt Carpenter to third base following the trade that sent David Freese to the Los Angeles Angels.
The slick-fielding Mark Ellis put together a solid campaign at the plate in 2013, batting. 270/.323/.351 with six home runs and 48 RBI in 433 at-bats. But it wasn't enough to convince the Los Angeles Dodgers to pick up his $5.75 million club option for 2014.
Ellis is 36 now, but has suitors interested in his glove work, steady veteran clubhouse presence and potential for more contributions on offense. The Dodgers should consider re-signing him as insurance for Cuban free agent Alexander Guerrero, who inked a four-year, $28 million deal earlier this offseason.
Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle reported that Ellis' agent recently met with the St. Louis Cardinals, among other teams. The Yankees seem like a logical option as well after the departure of Robinson Cano.
2. Brian Roberts
Brian Roberts looks like a different player now at the end of a four-year, $40 million contract with the Baltimore Orioles than he was at the beginning of it. Roberts was one of baseball's best at his position to start the deal, but now, at 36 and with recent injury history, he has some flags.
3. Placido Polanco
The versatile infielder has never been a force with the bat, but his defensive skills have allowed him to carve out a 16-year career, and he should be able to continue as a valuable utility man late in his career.