The Arizona Diamondbacks added Adam Jones to their outfield mix this week.
Although the deal came as a surprise to many, it is a perfect solution to Arizona’s lack of outfield depth.
Mike Hazen, the general manager of the Diamondbacks, said that Jones is “going to play all three outfield spots,” most likely replacing Ketel Marte, David Peralta, and Steven Souza Jr. on their days off. Hazen added that the Snakes are “excited to add him, the quality person, teammate, leader” to their clubhouse because “he has a pedigree of winning,” which is part of the environment the Diamondbacks are trying to foster this season.
He is regarded as one of the league’s best teammates, a dedicated community member, and spokesman on racial issues, baseball-related or otherwise. Arizona is sure to benefit from his veteran presence, as the team lost veteran leaders A.J. Pollock, Paul Goldschmidt, Patrick Corbin, and Daniel Descalso during the offseason.
In regards to the impact Jones has on a team, specifically the Orioles, the Baltimore Sun said it best: “he was, and will remain, a part of their lore, and was the face of teams that broke the organization’s streak of 14 straight losing seasons.”
The 2018 season was Jones’ last with the Orioles, a team he spent 11 years with. He was an immediate fan favorite since his 2008 arrival, and many fans became increasingly upset with Baltimore the longer no news of him and his impending signing surfaced.
For the past several years, the issue of veteran players, like Jones, being on the free agent market for long periods of time has been at the center of a dispute between Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association. Closer Craig Kimbrel and former Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel remain as two big-name veteran players who have yet to be signed by teams, because of the growing promotion of younger talent.
This season, however, the beloved No. 10 veteran has joined a new team in a new league, with many new opportunities ahead of him.
Like Mark Brown from Camdenchat.com said, “He is Birdland.” He always will be.
Jones, 33, is a five-time All-Star, and a four-time Gold Glove winner, all of which he obtained when he was an Oriole. He is a career .278 hitter with 266 home runs. He’s coming off the worst season of his career in 2018, when he was worth only 0.2 rWAR while slashing .281/.313/.419, as he power appeared to diminish.
For the 2019 season, however, the Diamondbacks have been lucky enough to get Adam Jones to join their franchise, and it should be exciting to see his contributions to the Snakes as he enters his 14th year as a major leaguer.