The Baltimore Orioles signed Quintin Berry to a minor league contract on Friday, a move about which I am a big fan.
I really liked bringing in Julio Borbon, a prospect I thought could make an impact in the majors. Berry for me is even more intriguing.
Berry is younger than Borbon and also hasn’t had as many chances in the majors. He has only played in around 100 major league games, and can play each of the outfield positions.
Berry is a career .268/.339/.371 hitter in the majors, but don’t confuse him as a power hitter. His strength lies in his speed.
Berry is a perfect 29-29 in stolen base attempts, five of those coming in the postseason with the Boston Red Sox and Detroit Tigers.
But I like this move for reasons that aren’t going to come on paper. This move could secretly be very good for the team.
Quintin Berry’s best man from his wedding is currently the face of the Orioles, Adam Jones. The two are best friends, have known each other since the age of seven and grew up together. They also aren’t afraid to tell each other how it is.
Being able to work with Jonesy might help motivate Berry to play his best, and while I don’t think he will be able to win the LF position, I certainly think he can be the backup OF. And his speed would be valuable as a pinch runner and even possibly as a defensive replacement.
To get a glimpse of the relationship between Adam and Quintin, check out this video from MLB.com: http://wapc.mlb.com/play/?content_id=30979555&topic_id=6479266