Outfielder Lew Ford, expected to be added to the Orioles' 25-man roster before Sunday's game, announced his arrival in Baltimore on Twitter late Saturday night.
"The tougher the battle the sweeter the victory," Ford tweeted along with a photo of Oriole Park at Camden Yards from what appears to be a nearby hotel room. "This is crazy I'm back! Thank you everyone who supported and believed."
The Orioles optioned right-handed reliever Miguel Socolovich after Saturday's 6-1 loss to the Oakland Athletics to add a much-needed position player to a bench depleted by lingering health issues that kept catcher Matt Wieters (right biceps) and designated hitter Jim Thome (neck spasms) out of Saturday's starting lineup.
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Ford, who was not in the lineup for Saturday's game at Triple-A Norfolk, was hitting .331/.390/.550 with 11 homers and 40 RBIs in 62 games for the Tides.
Ford, who turns 36 next month, hasn't played in the major leagues since the 2007, taking his career to Japan, Mexico and the independent Atlantic League before the Orioles signed him to a minor league contract this season.
In parts of five seasons playing for the Minnesota Twins from 2003 to 2007, Ford hit .272/.349/.402 with 80 doubles, 32 homers and 172 RBIs. His best season came in 2004, when he hit .299/.381/.446 with 31 doubles, 15 homers and 72 RBIs in 154 games.
The Orioles must also make a 40-man roster move to add Ford.
The addition of Ford marks the first of what could be a flurry of roster moves going into Tuesday's 4 p.m. nonwaiver trade deadline. Second baseman Brian Roberts (right hip labral tear) could be activated from the DL on Monday, and infielder Robert Andino (left shoulder strain) could follow Tuesday.