I was with you until about here. Jason Varitek and Scott Boras probably pulled the pettiest leverage stunt I've ever seen in sports when their camp released a tidbit that Tek was thinking of retiring if the Sox didn't meet his demands. This was after the Sox offered him a take it or leave it deal worth 5 million and an option for 2010. What compounds this much more for me is this call was AFTER the guy turned down arbitration which would have likely netted him around 10-12 million. I lost an absolute ton of respect for the man after that.
I was mainly, and should have clarified, referring to Tek's free agency when he signed his 4 year deal. The 2nd time around wasnt so great absolutely, but Tek also instructed Boras to only negotiate with the Sox while he was a free agent, and the threats were that he might consider offers elsewhere or retire. I also dont think the front office was scared whatsoever about Tek suddenly retiring, and his 'leak' thing was handled infintely better than whining to the media about the need for a long term deal. Leaks of 'I might retire' wont lead to much emotion from fans, but of a whine like 'Its so hard to play here on a 1 year deal' will. Its also worth noting that Tek never complained about his current contract or options he agreed to, take last year the Sox declined their option for this year and it cost him money. Tek understood the business side of baseball and didnt try to sway the public for help.
Funny enough, I have zero problem with anything Ortiz said. Yeah it's fairly obvious that it's a ploy to leverage multi-year deal but I think he's being pretty sincere about his case. He wants the security of knowing that if and when things don't go well and everyone is on his case, the team is committed to him for more than the 2011 season. It probably isn't going to work out that way for him, but saying you hope they don't sign him now based on these comments is borderline absurd and don't even get me started on the Randy Moss parallel - that's just fucking insane. And for the record, where exactly is David Ortiz being greedy here? I'm serious, did I miss something? Because I've read his quotes and the only thing I can get out of them is that he wants a long term commitment instead of a 1 year deal. Who's to say he's not willing to take a big pay cut for more security in terms of a multi-year deal? Maybe I missed something, but I don't get where the vitriol is coming from.
Ortiz also needs to recognize that the Sox might not want to even do a 2yr deal at anything >10M because they probably want the option of replacing Ortiz after this year if he declines or his performance is erratic again. Also, if he gets a significant multi-year deal would you agree he would just have another set of problems? Specifically the 'that contract was a mistake' set of problems? If so, his desires arent exactly logical unless his desires are simply about more guranteed money.
I personally dont think he is being greedy, just think he is handling it in the wrong way. The pleas to the public are just a silly way to try to negotiate with a front office that isnt emotional, stood by and supported him during his PED issue, and was probably very close to DFAng him a few times recently but didnt trash him in the media whatsoever. The same way we would critique George for blasting Yankeee players the front office had the opportunity to do that with Ortiz and didnt. So now when he plays the 'poor me' card, its foolish and the front office doesnt deserve to have to deal with it considering how well they have treated him during his various struggles.
And seriously, please stop complaining about athletes and their incredibly niche markets that place a high monetary value for their skills - when and if they might have an issue with their contract situation. Yes, the current economic climate sucks and yeah it's probably grating to hear about an athlete be pissed about making 10 million rather than 12. And yes, the majority of us will never sniff the type of money these guys make in a season in our entire lifetime. But this has been happening for how long now? How people can draw up so much emotion over it, I just don't understand.
If Ortiz came out when he was a FA and said 'I cant accept the Red Sox offer because I feel my value is higher than they are offering' I wont complain about his desire for more money. I also wont complain about him making $12M next year if they exercise the option even though its such a huge number in 'regular peoples pay' terms. But I wont sit by and applaud him for his negotiating skills when he whines to the media to try to sway public opinion about his 'feelings' and the need for 'security' when his potential paycheck dictates that he is very well paid in both real world terms and market value of DH terms and he agreed to the option in the first place.
If Ortiz came out and said 'I want a long term deal because I feel thats my market value', then I would simply discuss the merits of that. But trying to sway the public, and therefore indirectly asking for my help [in a very small way], opens him up to criticism by the fans and its fair to discuss the ethics of his actions and our feelings abaout it. If a down on their luck unemployed friend complains about trying to pay the mortgage its one thing, but if a rich friend complains about paying for a large boat that person opens themselves up to these emotional responses and I dont think its an unreasonable response. Ortiz went down this path by asking for the publics help, its a bad PR move, and then it becomes fair to us to say 'you make so much more than me, dont whine to me about it, and dont try to use me to get even more money'. I dont think that is an unreasonable response or an emotional one, just a fact of the matter response.
Edited by wutang112878, 30 October 2010 - 01:22 AM.