“I am certainly going back for an MLB return, no doubt. I have a few teams that have asked about this comeback but nothing more.” Says Aumont.
For Phillippe Aumont, the path to the big leagues wasn’t supposed to be this hard. Aumont was drafted 11th overall by the Seattle Mariners in the 2007 MLB draft, and Aumont was the first ever player from Quebec to be drafted in the 1st round. It had to be a very exciting moment but Aumont never took anything for granted. “Well I mean I never, assume you actually make it all the way up. But the expectation was there and you know, work your way up and it definitely was a great accomplishment and a great feeling.”
Aumont was a highly touted prospect in the Seattle organization, which in his rookie season which he posted a 2.75 ERA in 55.2 innings while striking out 50 and walking 19. However the Mariners wanted to add a starting pitcher and acquired Cliff Lee from the Phillies, and Aumont was a part of the package going to Philadelphia. Aumont spent the 2010 season and 2011 seasons working his way up to AAA, and on August 20th 2012, Aumont got the call to the majors and made his debut three days later, in which he pitched a scoreless inning. “It was definitely one of the best days on the baseball field. You know we kind of keep it as simple as possible day in and day out. And, that day when I got the call they told me you were going up, obviously it is one of the days you were waiting for your entire life for. I mean you are nervous and excited at the same time, and you just want to go out there and do your best. But you also want to fulfill expectations, and go out and perform.”
Aumont finished the 2012 season with the Phillies in the bullpen and finished with a 3.68 ERA and 2 saves in 18 appearances. After a successful 2012 season Aumont opened the 2013 season in the Phillies bullpen, but struggled with command all season and bounced between the MLB and AAA all year long. Then in 2014 Aumont took a step back and only pitched in five big league games with an ERA of 19.06.
After a disastrous 2014 season, Aumont transitioned back to being a starter and pitched very well in AAA, and got called up and made one start but was DFAed after. Aumont elected free agency and signed with the Blue Jays, and was sent to AAA. And being Canadian it had to special to sign with Canada’s team. “Well, I mean obviously it is Canada’s team. Most kids dream of playing for their hometown team and playing for the lone Canadian team as a Canadian is truly special. With that fan base behind you. But I mean for me obviously it was for the opportunity and it just being the Jays helped it out. You just have to keep going on with your business, and you go out there and do your thing.”
Aumont’s time in the Jays organization lasted less than a month and he signed with the White Sox in the off-season on a minor league deal. He only pitched in 11 innings with a 12.27 ERA and announced his retirement on June 6, 2016.
But just over a year later on June 7, 2017, Phillippe Aumont returned to the baseball game and signed with the Ottawa Champions an independent baseball team. “It was just one of those things that I decided I needed to go back you know.” Said Aumont of returning to baseball. And he has one goal in mind returning to the big leagues.
If this is it for Aumont he had the opportunity to represent Canada at the 2009 WBC, and the 2015 Pan-Am games and won gold which was a career highlight for Aumont. “For sure, winning a gold medal has to be on top of any ones list. How many people can say they won a gold medal in the Pan-Am? It is a big accomplishment and I will forever cherish that moment.”