I couldn’t resist filing a blog entry today that didn’t include a dateline. It’s good to be home.
Conor Jackson’s contract has been placed on Triple-A Norfolk’s restricted list pending receipt of a letter stating that the first baseman/outfielder desires to voluntarily retire, according to executive vice president Dan Duquette.
Yesterday, Jackson informed Tides manager Ron Johnson of his decision to retire. Johnson texted Orioles manager Buck Showalter with the news.
The Orioles promoted outfielder Lew Ford from Double-A Bowie to Norfolk to fill Jackson’s roster spot.
Jackson, who was 5-for-25 with the Tides, apparently expressed how he lost his desire to play.
“He loved being with the organization and all that, but he’s at the stage of his life where it wasn’t something he wanted to continue to do,” Showalter told reporters yesterday in New York. “I know a little bit more than that, but that’s something that should come from Conor. He’s just at the stage of his life where he wanted to move on and I respect him for it. It’s tough.
“I just wanted to know whether there was something he was unhappy about. It wasn’t at all. He had been thinking about it for a little while and just didn’t enjoy going to the park like he used to. I don’t think it had anything to do with Norfolk.
“He gave a great effort and really competed this spring. He made it down to the last cut. He should be very proud of that. Part of me hates to see him go, but I want him to be happy, too.”
Jackson was the final cut in spring training, losing out to Steve Pearce, who’s 0-for-13 in four games this season.
The Tides took a bus to Gwinnett yesterday, and right-hander Zach Clark (0-1, 5.19 ERA) is starting tonight. Jair Jurrjens (0-1, 1.59 ERA) starts Tuesday, followed by Freddy Garcia (1-0, 5.40 ERA) on Wednesday and Zach Britton (0-0, 2.35 ERA) on Thursday.
Josh Stinson (1-0, 0.77 ERA) starts Friday against Durham. He allowed one unearned run and three hits in 6 2/3 innings in Sunday’s 2-1 victory over Gwinnett at Harbor Park.
Norfolk closer Jairo Asencio has tossed four perfect innings thus far, registering three saves while retiring all 12 batters he’s faced. The Orioles acquired Asencio, 28, from the Milwaukee Brewers for a player to be named later or cash. He’s 1-2 with a 5.23 ERA in 39 major league games spread over three seasons with the Atlanta Braves, Cleveland Indians and Chicago Cubs.