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Michael Schwimer shows unhappiness with Phillies by not reporting to Triple-A

Aug 28, 2012, 11:19 AM EDT

Michael Schwimer Getty Getty Images

Last week the Phillies demoted rookie reliever Michael Schwimer to Triple-A, but the right-hander was unhappy about the move and believed he should have been placed on the disabled list instead because of elbow soreness.

That may not seem like a big difference, but a DL stint would mean collecting a major-league salary and accruing major-league service time, both of which beat the hell out of Triple-A.

It’s now five days later and Schwimer has yet to report to Triple-A, with Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer writing that he’s seeking a second opinion to prove that the elbow injury is legitimate

When asked about the situation, general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. replied:

He’s not in Lehigh Valley, but we don’t plan on taking any action. I really can’t comment on anything else.

There are examples of players in similar situations filing grievances against the team, although considering Schwimer is years from arbitration, let alone free agency, you’d think the Phillies would ditch the hardline stance before it got to that point.

  1. bigleagues - Aug 28, 2012 at 11:34 AM

    And here I thought he was just unhappy because he would miss his “Friends”.

  2. phillyphann83 - Aug 28, 2012 at 12:01 PM

    Aaron, it would be helpful if you included his pathetic stat line so non-Phillies fans would understand why he was sent down, instead of placed on IR. Someone send Schwimmer a box of Kleenex

    • deepstblu - Aug 28, 2012 at 12:10 PM

      How do you tell the difference between a pathetic stat line due to incompetence and a pathetic stat line due to injury?

      • heyblueyoustink - Aug 28, 2012 at 12:19 PM

        You look at his lousy stats from last year.

    • xmatt0926x - Aug 28, 2012 at 12:51 PM

      I don’t know phillyphann. I posted in the original story about this a couple nights ago that it seems kind of fishy. His name always gets mentioned among the young bullpen guys as the one guy they really like for next year because of his stuff. This has been mentioned several times in the daily news and on comcast by the beat writers. They also say they will use the rest of this lost season to audition the bullpen guys to see what they have going into next year. If the team sees him as a guy who could possibly be a set-up guy next year and they really like his stuff and are admittedly auditioning bullpen guys for the rest of this season then why send him down now when this is the exact period of time you would use to keep throwing him out there? and his stat line doesn’t reflect that he’s pitched much better the last few weeks. Put all that together with his harsh stance and it makes no sense to send him down now. Seems odd to me.

    • thereisaparty - Aug 28, 2012 at 1:14 PM

      It doesn’t matter. There is proper protocol, agreeed upon by both parties, that is to be followed in these cases. His stats are irrelevant here. The only thing that matters is if his injury is serious enought to merit a DL stay.

    • hodaghunter - Aug 29, 2012 at 2:14 AM

      There’s a lot of money involved in this situation. It’s not exactly cut and dry. The guy needs his service time to get to free agency when he can cash in on a deal.

  3. illadelphiasphinest - Aug 28, 2012 at 12:03 PM

    And the Philly fans are unhappy with his performance. So if he’s crying over the demotion due to financial reasons. Do the Phils have the right to not pay him his money until he reports to AAA? If so that seems like a smart move Shwimmer…

  4. Old Gator - Aug 28, 2012 at 12:12 PM

    There are many ways to show unhappiness. I suppose this one beats bedwetting.

  5. delawarephilliesfan - Aug 28, 2012 at 12:55 PM

    Have to add in – how do you know, Aaron, that is is the Phillies that are taking a hard line? The guy has been lit up all year, but for a good stint in July. And his last outing was scoreless. Why are you accepting his word that he is injured?

    • paperlions - Aug 28, 2012 at 1:46 PM

      He’s been better this year than last year. Not sure why Philly fans are bitching about his performance now.

      • heyblueyoustink - Aug 28, 2012 at 1:50 PM

        Better doesn’t mean good. And this is two days in a row you’ve defended the Phillies bullpen. It’s odd.

      • paperlions - Aug 28, 2012 at 1:58 PM

        Facts be facts.

        Getting on 2 middle men for blowing 8 saves between them is silly. Teams average about 20 blown saves/year (most of which don’t occur in the 9th inning), getting on middlemen for blowing 8 between them when the closer has blown 3 as well is misguided.

        Schwimer’s ERA has been over 1/2 run better this year, he’s getting more GB and allowing fewer HR. No, he hasn’t been good, but he kind of sucked last year….so….what did people think? That he’d cut his ERA in half? Dude is a FB pitcher in a park that tends to give up some HRs….not the best combo.

      • delawarephilliesfan - Aug 28, 2012 at 2:23 PM

        Re-read my comment – I am not trashing Schimmer, I am mostly discussing that I don’t see why Aaron is believeing that Schwimmer is injured. Yes, he is better this year than last, but that is mostly due to a 8-10 inning scoreless streak in July, which I noted. But it is a correct statement that he has been hit up a lot this year, ,and hence, a demotion to the minors seemed logical for the Phillies, and certainly in step with how they have handled other young players

      • hisgirlgotburrelled - Aug 28, 2012 at 2:35 PM

        Your last paragraph explains exactly why he would be demoted. He didn’t nail down a job in the bullpen. He improved from last year, so what? So he’s a little less shitty than he was last year. No one is complaining that he wasn’t good enough, it’s that Schwimer being demoted is not solely based on performance. It might be a fishy situation, but either way, he could have totally been demoted to give someone else a chance.

      • paperlions - Aug 28, 2012 at 3:10 PM

        Maybe you should re-read the story….he claims he is hurt. If a guy is hurt, he should go to the DL, not demoted and then put on the minor league DL (which is what will happen if he can’t pitch).

        It isn’t a question of performance, but of health

      • delawarephilliesfan - Aug 28, 2012 at 3:31 PM

        Yes, I realize he claims he has hurt. I did not say anywhere he claims otherwise. Clearly the Phillies claim he is not hurt. My question is why Aaron, in the absence of any proof of an injury, believes Schwimmer?

        Surely you are not suggesting that every story every player told is true?

  6. mJankiewicz - Aug 28, 2012 at 2:44 PM

    It’s weird that they would send him down. He’s performed really well in the minors, I’m not sure what else he has to prove there.

    • deepstblu - Aug 28, 2012 at 4:14 PM

      A couple days before Schwimmer was sent down, the Phillies called up Phillipe Aumont when Jeremy Horst briefly went on paternity leave. When Horst came back, they chose to send Schwimmer down. Aumont came to Philly in the Cliff Lee trade, which certain elements of the fan base still haven’t gotten over (yes, even after getting Lee back) and you could be forgiven for thinking that the front office wants to have something to show for that deal at the major league level.

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