Okay, okay. This isn't really a chili cook-off to benefit the Boys & Girls Club. You got me. The ruse is over. That was just a cover story to get you guys in the same room. I know you wouldn't have agreed to it, otherwise.
Texas, I know you've said some things. And maybe you meant them, and maybe you didn't. You said that you didn't want to get involved, and that you weren't expecting anything big. You aren't looking for a long-term relationship, we get it.
And Michael, you've said … oh, you w … you want me to address this to Scott? Okay. Scott, you've said some things, too. You've said you're feeling like a piece of meat, and while you weren't expecting anyone to put a ring on your finger right away, you wanted to feel very, very comfortable for a long, long time. When that wasn't realistic, you adjusted your expectations.
That's good. All we're looking for is an open dialogue, here.
I think it's ridiculous that you don't see how perfect you guys are for each other, though.
Also, we're talking about baseball. Just wanted to make that clear.
Texas, you've done a brilliant job avoiding cumbersome contracts. The thought of paying Josh Hamilton that much when he's in his late 30s? You passed, even though it would have been so easy to give in. You didn't extend Mike Napoli when he looked like the second coming of Mike Piazza, and you're avoiding deals like that so you can give them to the players you think are better bets. Yu Darvish. Adrian Beltre. You can do deals like those because you weren't backed into the corner with a nine-figure contract to Carl Pavano, or something.
But you're good now. If there's any way to make your team better now, do it. It's not like you're going to get a special ribbon at the end of your successful run because you did it while avoiding bad contracts at the same time. You don't know what the team is going to look like in 2016. The Phillies were world-beaters until they weren't. The Nationals were a perennial 90- and 100-loss team until they weren't. A million dollars spent today might do as much good as ten million five years from now.
Scott, you know that your client is way better than a faceless, entirely imagined, and theoretical replacement player. He could probably beat said replacement player at Scrabble, shuffleboard, thumb wrestling … but where it counts the most, baseball, he is way better than the replacement player is. He wins, like, four or five games more every year than the replacement player would on the exact same team. And that's worth a lot of money. But it's hard to explain that to season-ticket holders. Heck, it's hard to explain that to owners.
Honestly, other than defense, how is Michael different than Juan Pierre? Okay, other than defense and a couple dozen extra-base hits per year, how is he different from Juan Pierre? And I know that by excluding those things, it's like saying "Other than providing a means of transportation, what's the big deal about a car?", but seriously, it's easy for an owner or fan to look at you and not appreciate your true value.
It's not time for the WAR kings to get paid just yet. Maybe in the future. And in the present, guys like him will do fine. But he won't get nine figures.
It might not even be time for him to get high-eight. I know, I know, I know. B.J. Upton got $75 million, so your client should get at least $85 million. But Upton's younger than Bourn, and he hits dingers to go along with the defense. I'm not saying it's fair. I'm just saying it is. Also, the Twins were total dicks this year, trading two center fielders without taking any of the free agents off the market. They cost both of you millions.
I understand where both of you are coming from.
But stop, just stop. You're perfect for each other.
What about meeting in the middle? Instead of a five-year deal, what about a four-year deal with a vesting option? Or how about a three-year deal that includes a player opt-out after the first year? Because once Michael Bourn starts hitting in Texas, his numbers will look good. Really good. He'll be on base more, and he'll be driven in more. And, after a year, he might find the long-term deal that teams weren't cool with this winter.
In the meantime, Texas, you'd be much better in the short term. Which is one of the most pivotal seasons in franchise history, you know. Every one of them is until you aren't a contender anymore.
Alright, maybe those specific contract ideas are silly, but you know what I'm getting at. Get creative. Think outside the box. Think inside the bandbox. Ha. Just a little ballpark humor, folks. But the point still stands. There has to be a way for you two to get together on this. Because otherwise, your client will be in Seattle, playing for the Mariners, and hitting .220/.290/.340 (110 OPS+), which would be swell for the WAR, but not his next contract. And you know what he'll be doing when he's up there? Taking runs away from you, Texas.
No one wants that. No one really wants him to go to Seattle. Come, now. Look at each other. Loooooook at each other. Isn't there something there, a flicker, or a glimmer of hope and optimism?
You know I'm right.
Now sign the papers. Sign them. Do it. C'mon. We're all sick of this. Just sign the damn papers. You were meant for each other. Sign the stupid papers. This is worse than the Roy Oswalt stuff from last year.