The Milwaukee Brewers released pitcher Luke Barker this week, and he’s not happy about it.
It’s not the fact that he was released that got to him, however. That happens in baseball all the time.
It was that he was designated for assignment and released just hours after he underwent Tommy John surgery.
“Unfortunately, this means my time as a member of the Milwaukee Brewers organization has come to an end,” he wrote on Twitter on Thursday night. “I’ll let others decide whether releasing a player on surgery day is ethical. I’ll let others decide if the MLBPA allowing for injured players to be DFA’s makes them an effective union.
“For now I’m just thankful for my family, for the friends I’ve made in the past six seasons, for Dr. Camp and the team at the Mayo Clinic, and for all those who have followed along.”
Barker clarified his comments on Friday, and said that the Brewers actually came in and offered him a minor-league contract during his rehab after his initial tweet. His real anger, he said, is at the players association.
Despite the offer, however, Barker said he will instead stay a minor league free agent and rehab “at my own facility with the support of the Brewers.”
*edit for clarification - the offer of a minor league contract with in house rehab was made today after the reaction to my tweet last night
— Luke Barker (@Luke_Barker17) August 5, 2022
Barker, 30, made his major league debut for the Brewers in June. He allowed seven hits and five runs in three games, and was sent back down to the Brewers’ Triple-A team later that month — which is where he sprained his UCL, something that eventually led him to the surgery.
While it sounds like the Brewers came back to try and remedy the situation, it’s easy to understand why someone would be mad about losing their spot just hours after a major surgery.