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).
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.”
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