Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Mathieson designated. Why? It's complicated

Ready for a lesson in the convoluted rules of baseball's roster system?

Mathieson designated. Why? It's complicated


Ready for a lesson in the convoluted rules of baseball's roster system? 

The Phillies designated Scott Mathieson for assignment today to clear a spot for catcher Dane Sardinha. Sardinha is here because Carlos Ruiz is still a little woozy from getting his bell rung by a broken bat, but isn't hurt enough to require a stint on the 15-day disabled list.

So the Phillies needed a spot. Mathieson was the guy to go, for a quirky reason.

"He's sort of in limbo right now," Phillies assistant GM Scott Proefrock said.

More coverage
Box score: Phillies 14, Mets 8
Download FREE Philly Sports Now app for iPhone!
VOTE: Which Phillies pitcher shows most promise?
Buy Phillies jerseys and other gear
WATCH: Daily fantasy baseball updates

He's in limbo because of a odd roster rule rarely used. Mathieson has options remaining. So many are asking, why designate him for assignment and expose him to waivers when he could have just been optioned?

Problem is, Mathieson cannot be optioned without going on waivers. Here is my understanding of Mathieson's situation:

There are four types of waivers, the rarest being optional waivers. They are required when a team wishes to option a player who has options remaining but is more than three calendar years removed from his major-league debut. Mathieson falls under that category; he made his debut on June 17, 2006. And he has options left.

"We still have the ability to option him, we just haven't done it yet," Proefrock said.

So the Phillies had to place Mathieson on waivers regardless. Will they lose him? Almost certainly no. Optional waivers are revocable, which means if a team puts a claim in for Mathieson, the Phillies can pull him back.

"We're very hopeful he stays in the organization," Proefrock said. "That's what our plan for him is."

There. So relax about Mathieson, he won't be going anywhere. And this concludes your baseball roster rules lesson. Pop quiz on Tuesday.

We encourage respectful comments but reserve the right to delete anything that doesn't contribute to an engaging dialogue.
Help us moderate this thread by flagging comments that violate our guidelines.

Comment policy: comments are intended to be civil, friendly conversations. Please treat other participants with respect and in a way that you would want to be treated. You are responsible for what you say. And please, stay on topic. If you see an objectionable post, please report it to us using the "Report Abuse" option.

Please note that comments are monitored by staff. We reserve the right at all times to remove any information or materials that are unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane, indecent or otherwise objectionable. Personal attacks, especially on other participants, are not permitted. We reserve the right to permanently block any user who violates these terms and conditions.

Additionally comments that are long, have multiple paragraph breaks, include code, or include hyperlinks may not be posted.

Read 0 comments
comments powered by Disqus
About this blog

The place for up-to-the-minute Phillies coverage from The Inquirer's beat writers and columnists.

Jake Kaplan Inquirer Staff Writer
Bob Brookover Inquirer Columnist
Marc Narducci Inquirer Staff Writer
Matt Breen Inquirer Staff Writer
Latest Videos:
Also on
letter icon Newsletter