The 35-year old Ford was originally drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 12th round of the 1999 draft, but he hasn’t played a game in the major leagues since 2007, when he hit .233 as a member of the Minnesota Twins. Since then, he has bounced around with organizations all of the world, including Japan in 2008 and Mexico in 2010.
Not a single MLB organization wanted him before the 2011 season, not even in their minor league systems. So Ford signed with an independent league team, the Long Island Ducks of the Atlantic League, figuring it would be his last year in baseball. Injury issues shortened his season, though, and he wanted to go out with a full season under his belt. He re-signed with the Ducks in 2012, not expecting much. He had some friends on the Ducks from his earlier playing days, and had no thoughts of getting back to the majors. He just wanted to play.
But after he hit .333 in 19 games with the Ducks, the Orioles signed Ford to a minor league contract on May 18th, which was already more than what he was expecting going into the year.
“If I got picked up, great, but my thought process going into the season was that I was going to play in the Atlantic league and hopefully win a championship there,” Ford said. “This is kind of more than I dreamed of. The chance that this would happen is just so small. I’m a very realistic person and I wasn’t expecting this at all when I started off this year, to make it back here is ... I’m just so happy.”
Posted: July 29, 2012 at 12:24 PM | 23 comment(s)
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