Disappointed, but undeterred.
Seth McClung was released by the Florida Marlins on Tuesday, but his confidence was not shattered.
The 1999 Greenbrier East graduate signed a minor league deal with the club in February after he was non-tendered by the Milwaukee Brewers. He received a spring training invite and was one of three people competing for the Marlins’ final bullpen spot.
“Overall, yes,” McClung said of his disappointment. “I felt I brought a lot to their ballclub. They are very young and having experienced pitchers is always a good thing.”
McClung had spent all or part of the last eight seasons in the big leagues, except for the 2004 season when he was recuperating from Tommy John surgery while with the Tampa Bay Rays.
He was traded to Milwaukee in July 2007 and remained there until the Brewers let him go this offseason.
McClung was one of several pitchers signed to minor league deals by the Marlins.
He had one bad outing, March 8 against the New York Mets, in which he gave up six earned runs in 2/3 of an inning.
But his earned run average decreased with every subsequent appearance. He only allowed three earned runs over his next 5 2/3 innings and was 2-0 with an 11.05 ERA — down from 32.40 — when the Marlins released him.
“Surprised, a little,” McClung said. “I had one poor outing early in camp. Besides that, every time I threw the ball it was good to exceptional.”
McClung felt his release was more of a business decision than a knock against his skills.
“I just felt that they didn’t really know who I was as a player,” he said. “The pitcher who makes the team over me at this point was already on their 40-man roster and there were less moves to be made to add him to the 25-man roster.”
For now, McClung will head back to his Tampa home with wife Stephanie and their daughter Madison. He fully expects to be pitching again soon.
“We have some calls out and I am sure that there will be interest,” he said. “I have pitched in the major leagues a total of seven years and (teams) can always use experienced pitchers out of the pen. I have been very blessed by the Lord. I just put my trust in Him that all things happen for a reason.”
Disappointed, but undeterred.
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