Orioles bring back Pearce to bolster depth

Orioles bring back Pearce to bolster depth

BALTIMORE -- Outfielder Steve Pearce signed a Major League contract with the Orioles just a week after the team designated him for assignment.

The move also came just hours after the Orioles claimed him on unconditional release waivers, but he opted for free agency instead of accepting the claim. Pearce has struggled to get playing time this season because of the club's depth in the outfield.

However, O's manager Buck Showalter values the depth Pearce provides for the outfield, especially with Nick Markakis taking over first-base duties with Chris Davis on the 15-day disabled list. If the Orioles activate Manny Machado prior to Wednesday's game against the Pirates, they will have to make another move with their 25-man roster because of the Pearce signing.

Given that the Orioles had less than 25 players on their active roster Tuesday, they were able to work out a deal with Pearce and avoid the 30-day waiting period. In that scenario, they had to work out a deal within the next 24 hours as Tuesday's rainout bought them an extra day of having Machado on the disabled list.

Pearce, 31, has gone 1-for-7 in three games with the Orioles this season.

Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. Todd Karpovich is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.