The Orioles added outfielder Eric Young Jr. on a minor league deal with a spring training invite, providing an experienced outfielder to what’s going to be a young, inexperienced group of outfielders in major league camp.
Young, 33, hit .202 with a .551 OPS in 109 at-bats for the Los Angeles Angels last year, representing his fifth MLB team over 10 years after beginning his career with the Colorado Rockies before moving on to the New York Mets, Atlanta Braves, New York Yankees, and later the Angels.
Manager Brandon Hyde said Tuesday of the team’s recent free agent signings — they signed right-hander Nate Karns to a major league deal as possible rotation depth on Thursday as well — that both Young and Karns come highly recommended.
“I just had a meeting with Karns,” Hyde said. “He's impressive, and I'm excited about EY Jr., too. I've heard a lot of really good things. I've seen them both play. I have some close friends that have had both those guys in the past, and they say unbelievable things about both of them. I'm excited to get them in here and watch them work out.”
Though he primarily played center field in the majors last year, Young didn't rate well there by most public defensive metrics.
He’ll join a major league outfield mix including Cedric Mullins, Trey Mancini, DJ Stewart, Austin Hays, Joey Rickard, Anthony Santander, Yusniel Díaz, Ryan McKenna, and Mike Yastrzemski.
Young posted that he was joining the Orioles on Instagram after a MASNSports.com report.