Parrino came over to the A’s back in late 2012 along with pitcher Andrew Werner (who has since been outrighted to Triple-A Sacramento this offseason) for pitcher Tyson Ross and minor league prospect A.J. Kirby-Jones. Parrino never really got a long look in Oakland after struggling in Triple-A Sacramento. He was supposed to be an average glove, average bat, but with an above average eye at the plate. I even mentioned him as a breakout candidate.
The question now is why did the A’s acquire one utility infielder for another utility infielder. What does Elmore bring to the A’s that Parrino did not? What chances does he have to make the roster?
Elmore was claimed by the White Sox from the Houston Astros back in November of last year. With the Astros Elmore put up a triple slash (batting average, on base percentage, and slugging percentage) of .242/.313/.325 in 120 at bats. That does not show the potential that Elmore has though. At Triple-A Oklahoma City in 2013 he put up a triple slash of .299/.382/.433 which led to an impressive .815 OPS (on base percentage plus slugging percentage) in nearly 300 at bats. He also had 16 stolen bases. In comparison Parrino put up a triple slash of .210/.300/.302 with a .602 OPS and 3 stolen bases. At a relatively low cost the A’s improved their depth at positions they were already deep at.
Elmore has an extremely low chance of making the roster. With Josh Donaldson, Jed Lowrie, Alberto Callaspo, Nick Punto, Brandon Moss, and one of Eric Sogard, Daric Barton, or Nate Freiman all in the fold it would take a monster spring from Elmore to jump onto the 25 man roster. As San Francisco Chronicle’s Susan Slusser told me Elmore still has options left making him likely starting at Triple-A Sacramento to start the season.
Elmore provides more speed, more power, and a better glove than Parrino. This move is a quiet one, but any time you can not only add to, but also improve your depth is a big positive. Elmore may not see anytime in Oakland this season, but just in case, the A’s now have a solid replacement if they catch the injury bug.