Baltimore Orioles make smart move in signing Shed Long

Jun 22, 2021; Seattle, Washington, USA; Seattle Mariners left fielder Shed Long Jr. (4) celebrates after hitting a solo home run during a game against the Colorado Rockies at T-Mobile Park. The Mariners won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Brashear-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 22, 2021; Seattle, Washington, USA; Seattle Mariners left fielder Shed Long Jr. (4) celebrates after hitting a solo home run during a game against the Colorado Rockies at T-Mobile Park. The Mariners won 2-1. Mandatory Credit: Stephen Brashear-USA TODAY Sports /
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If the Baltimore Orioles are going to eventually come out of their rebuild, they are going to need to improve their talent level in all areas. While they have some exciting prospects on the cusp of the majors, they do not have nearly enough major league caliber players to make a difference. The Orioles are going to need to take some chances to build the roster they need to compete.

The Orioles took a step in that direction on Wednesday. They have signed Shed Long to a minor league deal and will likely give him a look during spring training.

Baltimore Orioles taking chance on Shed Long

There was a time when Long was considered one of the top prospects in the Reds’ system. While there were questions about his glove, he was considered to have an intriguing mix of power and speed that could make him a bat first second baseman. He showed signs of that promise during his first stint with the Mariners, producing a .263/.333/.454 batting line with five homers and 12 doubles while stealing three bases in his 168 plate appearances.

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Long was unable to live up to that performance afterward. He produced a disappointing .184/.250/.325 batting line in his 249 plate appearances between 2020 and 2021, hitting seven homers and nine doubles while stealing five bases as he was plagued by injury. The Mariners ended up letting Long go at the end of the season.

Now he will get a chance with the Orioles. There are opportunities for Long to play a major part in the future of the organization should he perform well in spring training. Rougned Odor is currently listed as Baltimore’s starting second baseman, which does not speak well for the talent on the roster.

It is certainly possible that Long can be the answer. He is presumably healthy now and had displayed the ability to live up to his potential in 2019. As he is under team control through until 2026, he could be a key part of the Orioles future plans.

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The Baltimore Orioles have signed Shed Long to a minor league deal. He is the type of player that the Orioles should be taking a chance on.