Rickie's younger brother Jemile making impact with A's

In the eighth round of the 2005 draft, the Brewers selected high school second baseman Jemile Weeks, younger brother of Rickie Weeks, who was within days of being called up to begin his career as Milwaukee's second baseman.

The Brewers knew the younger Weeks had a scholarship offer from the University of Miami and would be difficult to sign but they took a shot anyway. Instead, Jemile went to college and emerged three years later as a first-round draft pick of the Oakland A's.

Imagine what might have happened had Jemile signed with the Brewers. Would he have taken his brother's job? Would the Brewers have committed long-term to Rickie as they did this spring?

We'll never know, but suffice to say Jemile has made an immediate impact in Oakland. In fact, he was playing so well after being summoned from the minors June 7 that veteran Mark Ellis did not reclaim the second-base job after coming off the disabled list last week.

Entering Saturday, the 24-year-old Jemile had established himself atop Oakland's batting order with a .305 batting average. Ellis, now considered trade bait, said he understood why Weeks did not relinquish the job.

"Jemile is playing too well to take him out," Ellis said. "He's provided a spark. You can't take him out. I hope he does well and plays 10 years in Oakland."

Jemile, a 5-foot-9 switch-hitter, is making a similar impact with the A's that catcher Buster Posey made across the bay in San Francisco when summoned in the first half of the 2010 season. Beyond that, their backgrounds are similar.

Both were first-round picks in '08, with Posey going fifth and Weeks 12th. Both were college stars in Florida, with Posey coming out of Florida State. Both were seen as possible difference-makers, offensively and defensively.

Obviously, Weeks can only dream of having the same first-year impact of Posey, who went on to claim rookie of the year honors and help the Giants win the World Series.

"I have nerves," said Weeks, who was batting .321 with a .417 on-base percentage at Class AAA Sacramento when summoned. "At the same time, they're exciting nerves, like readiness."

Weeks was fortunate to receive counsel and advice along the way from his big brother as well as former A's standout Rickey Henderson. There also has been the leadership and magnanimity of Ellis, who holds no grudges.

"My loyalty is obviously to Oakland, but I realize the situation," Ellis said. "Jemile is the future, and we play the same position. It's something I have zero control over, anyway."

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