Try to picture Roger at the auction house; “Bid stands at 16.5 million, do I hear 16.75, 16.75 in the back, do I hear 17? 17 million on the phone, do I hear 17.5? 17 million do I hear 17.5, 17.5, final offer do I hear 17.5? Sold for 17 million!”
I see where Roger Clemens is up for arbitration with the Houston Astros; the figures I’ve heard being tossed around were 17-18 million for a one year contract extension. Is it about the money or is it about the pride of having more money than God?
I have a challenge, one that might set the tone for bringing baseball salaries back to something close to reasonable. Instead of asking 17-18 million for a one year contract, settle for 1 million to play the year with a bonus clause; say 3 million bonus if the team makes the playoffs, another 3 million for each round of playoffs made and 10 million for winning the World Series. Now that would be a way for the team to sign more talent and make Roger look like a generous person to boot. Then he could really show his stuff by turning around and buying a share of the team with his bonus. Just think what would happen if the ball players owned the team and had to pay themselves the salaries they now demand through arbitration; there might be reason and sense applied instead of the insanity that rules today.
It might send the message to other multimillion dollar players that you can get by on just a million dollars, make those necessary budget cuts; only one Rolls Royce in the driveway, only one mansion and one winter get away house in the mountains. The ball team could have a more evenly distributed payroll, the price of tickets could come down, the stadiums could be refurbished or replaced without the use of taxpayer dollars if those dollars that are thrown at ballplayers were invested in the facilities.