The Portland Diamond Project has added another notable investor to its group -- former major-league and Oregon State infielder Darwin Barney.
“The timing is real good for me,” Barney, who just spent his first summer in retirement after an eight-year major-league career with the Cubs, Dodgers and Blue Jays. He was in spring training this year with the Texas Rangers but decided to walk away from the game. “I never envisioned being an owner of a major-league team but I never envisioned being a major-league player, either.
“You never know what your path is going to be, you just know what your passions are going to be. I quit playing to spend more time with my family. This came up just at the right time.”
Barney is very confident that the PDP is going to be successful in its effort to bring MLB to Portland.
“I don’t want to put a number on it,” he said. “We think the chances are really good. I would bet on it. We could be a part of history here.”
Barney starred on two national championship teams at Oregon State after a high school career at Southridge. He won a Gold Glove with the Cubs after tying the major-league record for consecutive errorless games by a second baseman.
He joins Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson and his wife Ciara as owners of the prospective team.
“We’ve really tried to bring a diverse group together,” Barney said. “With Russell and his wife we bring a lot of different platforms to spread the word."
“I’ve really been impressed with the leadership of this group,” he said. “They have the right people at the top. They get things done.”