With this tweet, Adam Jones of the Baltimore Orioles announced that he had accepted an invitation to play for Team USA in the upcoming 2013 World Baseball Classic. Presumably Jones will play centerfield for the Joe Torre-led stars and stripes team, which will attempt to win it’s first ever WBC next month. Jones is a career .278 hitter, who averages 22 homers, 77 RBI, and 31 walks over the course of a 162-game schedule.
As much as finishing with a winning record or going to the playoffs, this should tell Orioles fans that people are starting to notice what’s going on in Baltimore. Jones being selected over other players says that the Orioles are developing some good players, and the national establishment is starting to notice. Torre apparently contacted Jones and offered him a spot on the team prior to the Christmas holiday, however Jones kept that news under wraps until now.
As has been mentioned numerous times on Birds Watcher, the Florida Grapefruit League schedule is a bit different this year due to the World Baseball Classic. Jones will try to split his time between Team USA and Sarasota as much as he can, but Orioles fans can take solace in knowing that he’ll be getting reps in the field as well as at-bats. This will still help him to get ready for the season. We’ll cover the WBC (and perhaps a bit more specifically what Adam Jones is doing in the WBC) here on Birds Watcher as it unfolds, however our top priority will be to cover Orioles’ spring training. That aside, congratulations to Adam Jones, and here’s to hoping that he represents our country well!