Jones (elbow) recently underwent Tommy John surgery and will miss the entire 2017 season but has signed a minor-league contract with Texas for next season, T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com reports. Jones converted to pitching this season, showing enough promise to remain under contract for 2017 despite the fact that he'll miss the entire season rehabbing his elbow,
Jones was placed on the DL with an elbow impingement, Stefan Stevenson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. The club's plan of converting Jones to a pitcher will have to wait, as he's heading to the DL with an injured throwing arm. When the southpaw is healthy again, he'll likely resume throwing at Single-A Hickory.
Jones is being converted to the mound, according to Jamey Newberg of the Newberg Report. Jones, a lefty, sat in the low-to-mid 90s as a pitcher in college, and this appears to be his best chance of getting back to the big leagues. Typically when position players are converted to pitchers, it is in a relief role, as they don't have time to learn more than one secondary pitch (typically a slider). In time, Jones could serve as a hard-throwing lefty for the Rangers.
Jones was reassigned to minor league camp Saturday, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports. The Rangers are set in the outfield at the major league level with Ian Desmond, Delino DeShields Jr., and Shin-Soo Choo all set to start the season, leaving Jones as a likely candidate to spend the year in the minors. The 27-year-old center fielder had a solid showing this spring with a .310 average with two home runs, a double, and a triple over 42 at-bats. He'll provide organizational outfield depth at Round Rock or Frisco this season in all likelihood.
Jones signed a minor league deal with the Rangers on Thursday that includes an invite to spring training. He was acquired in the Leonys Martin trade with Seattle, and then non-tendered, so the Rangers found a way to bring him back without using a 40-man spot. Jones is a great athlete, but he is still working on being a skilled baseball player. Look for him to spend most of the year at Triple-A, as the Rangers have a lot of organizational outfield depth.