The agent for Logan Morrison says he intends put a call in to the players' union on Monday to see if the Marlins committed a violation when they demoted the outfielder to the minors.
"It's in Logan's best interest to make sure that his rights are protected," said Fred Wray, who represents Morrison. "Everything I know at this point doesn't add up. People feel this wasn't right. We're going to turn over some rocks."
Morrison was optioned to Triple A New Orleans on Saturday, the same day he didn't show up for a meet-and-greet with season-ticket holders. That same night, veteran utility infielder Wes Helms was released. Wray said Helms -- the Marlins' union representative -- informed Morrison that he didn't have to attend the function.
The Marlins said Morrison was demoted and Helms was released due to performance. Morrison is hitting .249 (only .200 during the second half), but his 17 home runs rank second on the club and his 60 RBI puts him third on the team. Helms was hitting just .191.
But the timing of the two moves has raised eyebrows, as did comments by Larry Beinfest, president of baseball operations. Beinfest, in explaining the moves on Sunday, said that "(Morrison) will be a good player for a long time. The talent is there. He just needs to work on all aspects of being a major leaguer."
Some have interpreted that statement as one directed at Morrison's off-field activities. He's been not only one of the most outspoken Marlins, but operates an extremely popular Twitter account in which he often expresses his opinions.
But Wray wonders if the demotion all stems from a chain of events over the past few days. Morrison's charity bowling event scheduled for Thursday was postponed, Wray said, when the Marlins' Community Foundation "dropped the ball" when it sold only eight of the 34 lanes that had been reserved.
"If it had gone off, it would have been a subpar event, which Logan was not happy with," Wray said.
Wray said Morrison was asked to participate in two events on Saturday, a signing with several other players that ran over its time allotment by 30 minutes, and the meet-and-greet with season-ticket holders. Wray said Morrison participated in the first event, but not the second, after discussing it with Helms.
"He was a little disgruntled," Wray said of Morrison. "He sat down and spoke with (Helms), who said, 'I wouldn't do it if I were you. No team functions are mandatory. So Logan chose not to attend. He felt he was owed an apology from the community foundation, which he has not received."
Wray said Morrison met privately with Marlins general manager Mike HIll before Saturday's game to discuss the situation.
Following Saturday's game, Morrison was demoted and Helms was released. Wray thinks it smells fishy.
"I think Logan has gone above and beyond to accommodate fans and attract fans to the ballpark," Wray said. "But these guys do a lot. They have a signing in the afternoon and a meet-and-greet before the game -- two in one day prior to a baseball game in which you're facing Tim Lincecum, who has been absolutely on fire. It's just ironic to me. They want to point to Logan's Twitter (as a) distraction. Everyone wants to point to Logan's Twitter as being the powder keg. But are there other distractions from the front office here?"
Wray intends to investigate the matter with the union.
"We plan to explore this with the union, get their take on it," he said.