Myriad Orioles Thoughts: Jones catches Raffy; Dariel Alvarez's injury; the LED flicker - BaltimoreBaseball.com

Dan Connolly

Myriad Orioles Thoughts: Jones catches Raffy; Dariel Alvarez’s injury; the LED flicker

Photo credit: Evan Habeeb/USA Today Sports

Adam Jones usually shrugs off the, “What do you think about reaching an Orioles’ milestone?” questions.

But he’s reaching more and more significant ones these days. And the 31-year-old Jones is starting to give a little more thought to his accomplishments.

“They’re awesome. I think when you’re done playing and you have got time to reflect on it, it might mean a lot more. You get to reflect with your family and all that,” Jones said after hitting his 223rd home run as an Oriole, tying Rafael Palmeiro for fifth all-time in club history. “Right now, I’m still riding the wave, so it’s cool that I’m notified of it. But I’m just riding the wave until it’s over with. Once it’s all said and done I think I can take a seat back and reflect on my time here in Baltimore.”

Tied with Palmeiro, Jones is only behind Cal Ripken Jr. (431), Eddie Murray (343), Boog Powell (303) and Brooks Robinson (268).

That’s some pretty tremendous company. Jones gets that.

He also understands that he inadvertently joined more rare air on Wednesday when Chris Davis also homered in the 3-1 win over the Blue Jays.

It was Davis’ 200th homer, making him the eighth player with at least 200 homers for the organization. (Brady Anderson has 209).

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So, Jones and Davis each have 200 homers for the same team.

Jones thinks that’s pretty cool, too. And he took a self-deprecating shot at himself.

“I’ve got it in nine-plus years. He’s done it in six,” Jones said, flashing an “are-you-kidding-me look at reporters. “That’s a real, real slugger right there.”

But then Jones added a little more about the accomplishment.

“It’s just a testament, first off, to staying healthy. You can’t do none of this stuff while being hurt,” he said. “Myself and CD have been very instrumental in being on the field daily and that’s just a big message to this team. We play all the time. You try to get 155 or more games a year. When you play that many games, something has to happen.”

Dariel Alvarez injures elbow as pitcher

Dariel Alvarez, whom the Orioles converted from the outfield to pitcher this spring, has injured his elbow and is likely headed for Tommy John (ligament replacement) surgery, the Baltimore Sun first reported Wednesday.

Frankly, when the Orioles pushed for Alvarez’s conversion, it was obvious the 28-year-old’s star had fallen greatly in the organization.

This is a guy who was signed to an $800,000 deal as a Cuban defector in 2013 and was billed as near-ready when they brought him in. In fact, his name was brought up continually when the Orioles decided not to re-sign Nick Markakis after the 2014 season.

Alvarez had a rocket for an arm that would have played in right field, but he never generated the power that’s expected of a corner outfielder. And his baseball instincts never seemed major league ready. He hit .250 in 14 games with the Orioles, .293 in the minors with 39 homers in 422 games.

So, he tried pitching at the Orioles’ suggestion, and is now headed for surgery within weeks. He’s lost for a year or more.

He may have never gotten back to the Orioles as a pitcher or a hitter, but you have to feel terrible for the guy – who gave up so much to come to this country — that his career may be in jeopardy before age 30.

The LED lights trick

In the 9th inning Wednesday, the Orioles showed off their new toy, blinking their LED lights as closer Zach Britton was announced.

It was a little too WWE for me. I was expecting a “Let’s Get Ready to Rumble” pronouncement from PA announcer Ryan Wagner. Maybe Britton should have brought a folding chair from the bullpen and hit Blue Jays batter Jose Bautista with it. … On second thought, that would have been a cool entrance.

Anyway, my take on the new lights: Very bright. Too bright.

And I’m not alone. Jones was asked about the lights after Wednesday’s game. He didn’t give thumbs up.

“I’m sure they’re efficient and cost … cheap. … cost effective. That’s the way to go,” Jones said. “I don’t really like those new LED lights. They are really bright, on and off. But I ain’t paying for them, so, whatever. My eyes just gonna get used to them.”

12 Comments

12 Comments

  1. Boog Robinson Robinson

    April 6, 2017 at 7:37 am

    So I ask again … why did they let Christian Walker go this past offseason and keep Alvarez? Really? They wanted to convert him into a pitcher at age 28? Common sense would tell you that the Michael Givens experiment results are the exception rather than the rule.

    • Creatively_19

      April 6, 2017 at 8:57 am

      I gotta agree with Boog a bit on this one. My main question is why on earth did the O’s just give up on Walker, and get absolutely nothing for him? It seems to be a trend in the organization to stock up through draft, but hold on to prospects too long to get any value from them. The guys we do trade away prospects for have tended to be the deadline rental players that don’t return.

      • claudecat

        April 6, 2017 at 9:09 am

        I wouldn’t lose too much sleep over Walker’s departure. There’s a reason he’s bounced around between like 5 teams since he left. He’s just not that good…

        • Creatively_19

          April 6, 2017 at 9:19 am

          My point is that at one time, he had trade value, we could have gotten something in return for him, instead we released him and got nothing.

          • Paul Folkemer

            April 6, 2017 at 9:25 am

            That’s baseball. It would be great if teams had a crystal ball and could foresee which prospects would pan out and which wouldn’t, but it doesn’t always work out that way. The Orioles have certainly been on the positive end of that, too — they’ve traded away some prospects who never amounted to anything, and held on to a few prospects who blossomed with the Orioles.

    • Paul Folkemer

      April 6, 2017 at 9:21 am

      I think what it boils down to is that the Orioles still saw a potential future for Alvarez in the majors (as a pitcher), but they didn’t see a potential future for Walker.

      I think they were probably right about Walker, considering that he’s already bounced to three different teams since the club cut him loose (Braves, Reds, Diamondbacks), and then he passed through waivers unclaimed when the D’Backs sent him to the minors. He’s not exactly a prized commodity, and the Orioles could make better use of the 40-man roster spot.

  2. claudecat

    April 6, 2017 at 9:07 am

    I’d have to agree that the LED lights aren’t all that compelling when push comes to shove (or lawn chair to Bautista beard). They can be annoyingly bright at certain angles, and yeah… that flashing seems out of place at a baseball game. Of course, I don’t even like the excessive AC/DC-ing involved with the late inning relievers’ appearances. Brian Matusz my have been, well, Brian Matusz, but at least he had crazy good walk-up music “Voodoo Child (Slight Return)”). Try dancing to “For Those About to Rock” and you’ll just look silly.

    On an unrelated technical note, does anyone else have issues with this site updating properly? I have to manually refresh the page every time. I went like a month thinking nothing new had been posted! Also, logging in just now was a chore, also requiring some refreshing after a repeated error message.

    • Creatively_19

      April 6, 2017 at 9:10 am

      Claude I’m not having that problem. I’m logged in and usually stay logged in. Also, I agree AC/DC is hard to dance to.

      • claudecat

        April 6, 2017 at 9:12 am

        That’s another thing. It won’t keep me logged in. At least that was the case when I was posting regularly last season. Maybe that’s fixed now. It could well be that the site is not tailored to folks using desktop PC’s using Linux…

        • Steve Cockey

          April 6, 2017 at 9:39 am

          Hi Claude,

          Sorry you’ve been having issues here. Let me take a look. I’ll be in touch.

          Thanks,
          Steve

  3. Creatively_19

    April 6, 2017 at 9:07 am

    So my take on the lights: Boy were they bright! Okay, so I did notice that I was not able to track the ball nearly as well as I used to when it was hit up into the sky, I can imagine it could have an impact on the players all the same. However, at the top of the 9th when Britton entered and the O’s flickered and flashed the LED lights for the first time, the crowd really came to life – and I’m pretty sure it wasn’t for the tired Jack Black video that aired or the AC/DC that blared over the speakers. So the lights are probably a good thing, but maybe should be dimmed just a little.

    • Dan Connolly

      April 7, 2017 at 9:20 am

      I don’t know he well they can be dimmed. But they sure are bright.

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