The other subplot here is that, despite his warts, Jones is developing into one of the best players in modern franchise history.
He doesn't turn 29 until Aug. 1 and is signed through 2018 — at which point he'll only be 33. This is his seventh season with the Orioles, and he is skyrocketing up the franchise's record books. While playing the 18th-most games in club history, Jones ranks 13th in RBIs, 10th in homers, 14th in runs scored and is tied for 13th in hits.
Jones is one of only eight modern-day Orioles to be named to All-Star Games in at least four different seasons. The others are a who's who in franchise history: Cal Ripken Jr., Brooks Robinson, Frank Robinson, Eddie Murray, Jim Palmer, Mike Mussina and Boog Powell.
- Orioles' Adam Jones through the years [Pictures]
- More on Adam Jones' relationship with fans
- All-Star festivities at Minneapolis' Target Field [Pictures]
- Orioles in the All-Star Game through the years [Pictures]
- Orioles celebrate American League East title [Pictures]
- Orioles in September 2014 [Pictures]
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"He's really good. I think he is very underappreciated at times, and not only by some of the fans, but even by the guys that play against him," Davis said. "I remember playing against Jonesy when he first got over here, and he has really grown and matured so much as a hitter. It's been a lot of fun to watch."
Because he plays the same position for the same franchise, Jones always will be compared to Paul Blair, who won eight Gold Gloves and played on four World Series teams in 13 seasons with the Orioles from 1964 to 1976.
Blair made two All-Star Games in his 17-season major league career and is considered one of the greatest defensive center fielders in baseball history.
Albeit a different era, Blair did not produce the same consistent offensive numbers as Jones, who already has eclipsed Blair's career home run total and is within 100 RBIs of Blair despite playing in roughly 900 fewer games.
"Blair, obviously, was known for his defense. But he could swing the pole, too. But his defense was unbelievable. Eight Gold Gloves? That's pretty impressive," Jones said. "Eight is going to be tough to get. But I don't like to compare, 'I'm better, he is better.' We were different players in different eras, but we are just guys that loved what we did and took pride in what we did."
'Just give me one ring'
Jones said he has begun to look at his numbers — and the franchise's numbers — in a new light.
"This year has been different in terms of realizing it is still a game, but it is a career and a career path. I got my thousandth game, got my thousandth hit [this year]. I never thought I'd play that long and be able to achieve things like that," he said. "You start to accumulate certain individual accolades, and you start to look at it like, 'I've been around here for a minute. I've been around here for a little bit.'"
Orioles manager Buck Showalter said he wouldn't be surprised if one day Jones has a statue behind the center field wall at Camden Yards like the franchise's cadre of Hall of Famers. He has that potential, Showalter said.
"Without a doubt, and he is on his way," Showalter said. "But like I tell him … and all our guys, all those statues out there have one thing in common: they were on championship clubs. And if you want to get a statue out there, that's what we are going to have to do."
Jones said nothing else drives him like an elusive title. Blair and the other old Orioles greats have gotten to the World Series and succeeded — and he believes that's more career-defining than All-Star Games and franchise records.
"Just give me one ring and you can have all the other individual accolades, you can take them all back," Jones said. "I just want one title: A winner. Honestly, it doesn't matter about all that other stuff. If you are a winner, I'm pretty sure they can figure it out that you helped out to win. That's all I really want.
"When I am done playing, you can call me a winner, I'm good with that."
Adam Jones with the Orioles
Games: 967 (18th in Orioles history)