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Is A-Rod’s contract a blueprint for an Albert Pujols deal?

Jan 11, 2011, 11:06 AM EST

pujols4

Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch writes today about how the Yankees dealt with Alex Rodriguez‘s last contract. It could be instructive, Goold notes, given how the Cardinals are now poised to give out the biggest contract in the game’s history.

The story is interesting because it touches on something that has always troubled me: if teams can’t give players bonuses for actual performance benchmarks like 100 RBI or 40 home runs, why can the Yankees give A-Rod bonuses for hitting his 660th home run, for example?  The answer is that MLB approved the language in A-Rod’s deal specially.  It doesn’t say how those clauses are distinguishable from the banned ones, of course. Makes it seem like the Yankees and A-Rod were maybe given special treatment. Which would not surprise me at all.

As for Pujols, I’m not sure how the A-Rod example could come into play.  The milestone game has been more or less ruined as a result of steroids souring everyone on Bonds, A-Rod and their friends in the PED-using community. All-Star appearance bonuses and the like aren’t going to cut it because Pujols will get support for that sort of thing even after he’s ceased to be a force.

It seems like the Cardinals will just have to write Pujols giant checks.

  1. spudchukar - Jan 11, 2011 at 11:30 AM

    Post-dated checks, I hope.

  2. Jonny 5 - Jan 11, 2011 at 11:50 AM

    “if teams can’t give players bonuses for actual performance benchmarks like 100 RBI or 40 home runs, why can the Yankees give A-Rod bonuses for hitting his 660th home run, for example? The answer is that MLB approved the language in A-Rod’s deal specially. It doesn’t say how those clauses are distinguishable from the banned ones, of course.”

    Loophole. It doesn’t apply to Centaurs.

    • yankeesfanlen - Jan 11, 2011 at 12:38 PM

      Here’s an opening for the first time this year.

      Leave ARod alone!

      • Jonny 5 - Jan 11, 2011 at 12:51 PM

        Yes sir, I will. I owe you one anyway. I forget the terms of why, but I do remember I owe you one
        “Leave A-rod alone!!”

  3. spudchukar - Jan 11, 2011 at 1:39 PM

    The last thing A-rod needs is a loan.

    • henryd3rd - Jan 11, 2011 at 1:55 PM

      Very clever! A-rod please give me a loan!

  4. Kevin S. - Jan 11, 2011 at 2:34 PM

    A-Rod’s incentives are allowed because they’re marketing agreements based on home run milestones. Yes, they probably played fast and loose with the rules there, but I have a hard time believing that if Pujols and the Cards wanted to work out a marketing agreement for his 660th, 714th, 755th, 762nd, record-tying and record-breaking home runs, baseball would allow it.

    • Kevin S. - Jan 11, 2011 at 2:34 PM

      Have a hard time believing baseball *wouldn’t* allow it.

      *Grouses about the lack of an edit button*

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