As David hinted earlier today, many people had a feeling that Seth McClung was on thin ice, especially after the Brewers added LaTroy Hawkins and Chuck Lofgren to the roster this week. Turns out it was a pretty accurate feeling.
Adam McCalvy is now reporting via tweet that McClung was notified he won’t be getting an arbitration offer from the team, making him a free agent. McClung made nearly $1.7 million last year, and was probably in line for a raise that would put his salary over the $2 million mark after posting a 4.94 ERA in 62 innings. The strikeouts were down, the walks and home runs allowed were up, and he was referred to as “McDung” more than he was “Big Red” — overall, not a great year.
To be fair, he was better out of the bullpen, but many fans turned on him for good following this start against the Cubs, in which he surrendered 7 earned runs off 3 home runs in 3.1 innings. Unfortunately, most fans will probably remember him for that night more than his unexpectedly good 2008 season.
Best of luck to Seth. I have no doubts he’ll stick somewhere else — guys with a fastball like his always manage to find a place to play, and he still has quite a bit left in the tank. The Brewers just couldn’t afford to pay him $2 million to be a long reliever when they’ll likely have Lofgren and Claudio Vargas available to pitch in that role.
Edit: McClung has posted a “thank you” to the fans of Milwaukee. Say what you want about his on-field performance this past year, but he was one of the few guys you could tell cared every time he stepped out on the field and loved playing in Milwaukee.