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History of the Highest Paid Player in Baseball

Dec 9, 2009, 11:06 AM EDT

If the rumors and tweets and deals aren’t your cup of team lar at Wezen-Ball has a fun feature up today. He went back through contemporaneous newspaper accounts of every single
person who was considered the highest paid player in baseball, if even he only held that status for a day or so like Mark Langston did in 1989.  It goes back to the time Nolan Ryan allegedly broke the bank in Houston to become baseball’s first $1 million a year player.

Pretty neat stuff. Definitely puts today’s deals in perspective.

  1. RichardInDallas - Dec 9, 2009 at 11:46 AM

    I was lucky enough to be at Nolan’s debut as an Astro. Lots and lots of negative buzz in the air about the first million dollar man. Then Nolan did something he had NEVER done before in his career. He hit a home run. OK, if he’s going to hit, too……
    BTW – it went on to be about a 15 inning extravaganza, against LA. Don’t remember who won.

  2. Bill@TDS - Dec 9, 2009 at 12:12 PM

    Good memory, Richard.
    http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/HOU/HOU198004120.shtml
    17 innings, Dodgers won, and Ryan did hit a three-run homer…unfortunately one fewer run than he allowed in his six innings. He did leave with the lead, though.
    What I’m wondering is why they held the million-dollar man back for the third game. I mean, J.R. Richard and Joe Niekro were awfully good (led in ERA and wins in 1979, repsectively), but he’s the million dollar man! Weird.

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