In 1992, the New York Mets added Bobby Bonilla to their payroll. He was a disappointment. In 1999, they added Bonilla to their payroll again. He was a major disappointment. And in 2015, Bonilla, who will be both 47 years old and retired for a decade, is still on the Mets' payroll, and he will stay there for twenty-one more years. From the Wall Street Journal:
[...] Bobby Bonilla will remain on the franchise's payroll for 25 years, collecting an annual salary of $1,193,248.20. Those are the terms the Mets agreed to Jan. 3, 2000, when they bought out the final year of Mr. Bonilla's contract.
This arrangement has been public knowledge for a while, but now that it's resurfacing, we really need to address it. Consider this: the Mets decided that they would rather pay nearly $30 million in the future than pay $5.9 million in 2000. What's their rationale? A few possibilities:
- The Mets figured that the dollar would be worth nothing in the coming decades. Hundred-dollar bills would be used to fuel bonfires, over which Americans would heat dinners consisting of Ramen noodles and canned beans -- the new forms of currency. It's money you can eat! Neato!
- The Mets figured the world would end in 2012 anyway.
- The Mets hold an understanding of time similar to those of barnyard animals. 2011? 2025? 2034? What are these? Years? They don't believe in any element they can't measure with a yardstick or a scale, and so the concept of time means nothing to them. This could actually explain a lot.
- The Mets are planning on starting Bonilla every year as a sort of Minnie Minoso-style novelty appearance, because the fans will love it (the fans will not love it)!
There has to be a satisfying answer. Maybe they'll come up with one over at our Mets blog, Amazin' Avenue.
SB Nation presents: A switch-pitcher faced a switch-hitter and chaos ensued