Delmon Young says he has 'great opportunity' and Orioles are 'built to win'
By By Eduardo A. Encina
The Baltimore Sun|
Jan 15, 2014 at 8:14 PM
SARASOTA, Fla. -- Delmon Young strolled by his new manager's office Wednesday afternoon at the Ed Smith Stadium complex with a wide smile across his face.
"I just weighed in — 223 [pounds]," Young told Buck Showalter as he stopped by the office door. "I'm happy."
The 28-year-old Young, once the top prospect in the game, arrived at Orioles minicamp boasting about his weight and happy for an opportunity. Earlier this week, Young signed a minor league contract with the club that included an invitation to major league spring training.
Young will have a good chance to make the team. He will primarily compete for at-bats as a right-handed designated hitter against left-handed pitching in a mix that will include outfielders Nolan Reimold, Steve Pearce and Francisco Peguero.
"As as athlete, you don't mind competing, especially when this organization has always been pretty much brutally honest when they tell you something," Young said. "So, it's a great opportunity. The team's built to win, and it's built to win right now. And with the [American League] East being up for grabs because every team is good, it's always a great place to come and compete in. To me, it's probably the best division in baseball."
Young, who has a career .303/.341/.471 line against left-handed pitching, said he received multiple offers that included major league spring training invitations, but he saw the Orioles as the best opportunity.
"I can drive in runs and help score runs, because in this division, there aren't going to be many … games where it's 1-0," said Young, who began his career in the AL East playing for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. "Over here, you're going to have to score some runs on a consistent basis to compete with these teams over here because every team is loaded with pitching and every team is loaded with offense.
Showalter watched as Young took live batting practice Wednesday and caught fly balls in left field. Young, who has had some off-the-field issues in his career, also had a one-on-one meeting with Showalter.
"He looks like he's in good shape, about as good as I've seen him look physically," Showalter said. "A lot of people miss how young he is. He looks his age now. Some years he hasn't looked his age."
Young said that he wasn't concerned that he didn't sign with a team until mid-January."
Some guys are going to sign big deals before spring training," he said. "It doesn't matter when you sign, it just matters where you go, and if it's a good fit for you and the team."'
Orioles agree to terms with Colvin
The Orioles continue to add to their outfield depth, agreeing to terms with Tyler Colvin on a major league deal pending a physical, according to an industry source. The physical was scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.
Colvin, 28, played in just 27 games with the Colorado Rockies in 2013 while spending most of the season at Triple-A Colorado Springs, where he hit .275 with a .377 on-base percentage in 67 games. He failed to make the Rockies out of spring training last year and then batted just .160 in 78 plate appearances after he was recalled for a month last summer.
In 2012, however, the left-handed hitter batted .290 with 18 home runs and 72 RBIs in 452 plate appearances with the Rockies.
A 2006 first-round pick out of Clemson by the Chicago Cubs, Colvin hit 20 home runs for the Cubs as a 24-year-old in 2010. He was dealt to the Rockies for infielder Ian Stewart after a disappointing 2011 in which he batted just .150 in 80 games (222 plate appearances).
Colvin can play all three outfield positions, as well as first base. He has played 166 major league games in right field, 86 in center field and 79 in left field.
With the addition of Colvin, the Orioles will have 12 outfielders at spring training, including seven who will be on the 40-man roster.
Orioles sign Aceves to minor league deal
The Orioles have signed right-handed reliever Alfredo Aceves to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training, according to an industry source.
The 31-year-old Aceves split last season between the Boston Red Sox and Triple-A Pawtucket. He was 4-1 with a 4.86 ERA in 11 games (six starts) last season with the Red Sox and 4-2 with a 4.25 ERA in eight starts with 48 2/3 innings at Triple-A Pawtucket.
Over his six-year career in the major leagues, Aceves has been mostly a relief pitcher. He has a 30-14 career record with a 3.69 ERA and 29 saves — including 25 in 2012 with Boston. It is unclear whether the Orioles will try him as a starter or a reliever.
Two 'Sunday Night Baseball' games in first half
The Orioles are scheduled to play twice on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball in the first half of the 2014 season, the network announced Wednesday.
On April 20, the Orioles' game against the Red Sox at Fenway Park will be televised at 7 p.m. The Orioles will also host the Yankees on July 13 at Camden Yards in the final game before the All-Star break. That game is set for 8 p.m.
Major League Baseball also released game times Wednesday for the majority of the 2014 regular season schedule.
Around the horn
Last year's first-round pick Hunter Harvey, as well as right-hander Parker Bridwell, threw bullpen sessions Wednesday with Showalter, new pitching coach Dave Wallace and bullpen coach Dom Chiti watching. Right-hander Kevin Gausman is expected to throw a bullpen session Thursday. … Free-agent hitter Jack Cust continued his tryout with the club Wednesday, taking batting practice from live pitching. He expects to be back Thursday before the team makes a decision on whether to offer him a minor league deal. … Free-agent catcher Shawn Riggans, who played for the Rays from 2006 to 2009, had a one-day tryout with the club. Riggans, who had labrum and rotator cuff surgery in 2011, is hoping for a minor league deal. … Former All-Star closer Bryan Harvey, who has been around camp for the past two days accompanying his son, Hunter, spoke to right-handers Steve Johnson and Tommy Hunter and showed them his split-fingered fastball.