Originally reported by Ken Rosenthal, news broke yesterday that Jimenez and camp won’t pursue a service-time grievance against the White Sox for not being called up to the MLB last September after signing a six-year extension with the team.
This would be more comforting if language was actually written into the contract, but it would appear this is simply “an understanding” between the White Sox and Jimenez’s representatives. Call me pessimistic, but being a Sox fan for 28 years has taught me to always look at what can go wrong.
If this report accurately represents this situation as a verbal agreement and not something that’s written into Eloy’s new deal, there’s nothing to stop Jimenez from filing a grievance at a later time. Top prospects sometimes fail, so if six years go by and Eloy is a bust, there’s nothing to legally stop his representatives from milking the Sox for all they’re worth (even though that probably wouldn’t happen with a filed grievance anyways. Just ask Kris Bryant). You could even imagine a scenario where Eloy struggles and legitimately needs to go back to Charlotte and work on some things. In that case, a disgruntled Eloy could say “the hell with them” and pursue legal action anyways.
The White Sox would never send Eloy to AAA simply because of the embarrassment they would suffer. “Paying a minor league player millions of dollars is so ‘White Sox'” would be the headline of every terrible baseball blog on the internet (including this one). However, it’s still troubling that an employee agreeing to not take legal action against his employer is essentially coming down to a handshake at this point.