Sarasota, Fla. — Former Orioles outfielder Adam Jones’ long free agency wait appears to be at an end, with Jones agreeing to a one-year contract with the Arizona Diamondbacks, according to multiple reports.
According to ESPN, Jones' deal will be a one-year contract worth $3 million.
Jones, who was a five-time All-Star and four-time Gold Glove winner in center field for the Orioles, was one of several high-profile free agents remaining on the market, though his old club never really seemed like a candidate for his services this offseason.
The 33-year-old Jones was coming off a down season for him in his final year with the Orioles, batting .281 with 15 home runs, his lowest home run total since his first full season in 2008, with his .732 OPS also his lowest since that debut season with the Orioles.
After Jones exercised his vested rights to decline a trade to the Philadelphia Phillies at last July's trade deadline, which would have seen join Manny Machado, Zack Britton, Brad Brach, Kevin Gausman, Darren O'Day, and Jonathan Schoop on their way out the door that month, the team began its transition away from the pending free agent when they called up prospect Cedric Mullins and installed him in center field.
Former first-round draft pick DJ Stewart ultimately joined Mullins in the majors as part of the next wave of young Orioles. With Trey Mancini installed in left field as long as Mark Trumbo and Chris Davis are around as the designated hitters and first basemen, and with the presence of top prospects Yusniel Diaz and Austin Hays, former Rule 5 pick Anthony Santander, and breakout young outfielder Ryan McKenna, Jones had the misfortune of playing the one spot his old club didn't need a veteran player at.
Still, Jones' free agency became a lightning-rod issue both locally and nationally. Some fans believed that even as the Orioles were beginning what could be a long rebuilding process, Jones would be a nice symbol to the fan base — one even carried a sign around Ed Smith Stadium imploring the team to sign him Sunday.
But executive vice president and general manager Mike Elias said Jones would be treated like any other free agent, and the team only ended up signing one to a major league contract this offseason — right-hander Nate Karns.
That leaves Jones' final homestand, filled with ovations and tributes from fans and teammates, as the longtime center fielder's lasting memory in an Orioles uniform.