Would you swap John Lackey’s terrible contract for Ryan Howard’s even worse deal? Next season you might not have a choice thanks to Commissioner Bud Selig’s new plans to re-distribute payroll around the league.
The plan, currently under review with the Owners Union, would have the players deemed to have the 36 worst contracts in baseball placed in a Free Agent pool. Each GM would spin a roulette wheel and get stuck with the remaining contract of the player they land. A few GMs such as the Yankees Brian Cashman, and the Phillies Ruben Amaro, would get two spins for careless spending.
“I subscribe to the notion that a change of scenery can do wonders for a player,” said Selig. “Not to mention research shows that merchandise and ticket sales spike the first month of a big-name addition, regardless of who it is.”
As of now, 15 of the 36 players have agreed to be a part of the experiment.
“As long as I’m still getting paid, I’ll play on the moon at this point,” said Adam Dunn, set to make $14 million after arguably the worst season in baseball history. “That being said, I want no part of the Mets.”
The plan can be very beneficial for a fortunate few. A lucky spin could swap out a contract with hundreds of millions of dollars left on it for one that expires as early as 2014. Still, some GMs are wary of the idea, stating that gambling is banned in sports for a reason.
“Not me, I think it’s a brilliant idea,” expressed Red Sox GM Ben Cherington. “There is literally no scenario here that doesn’t benefit us. Have you seen the Carl Crawford deal?”