Contract Negotiation Headline MLB Players

18 Million…Even If You Strike Out

Magglio Ordonez

Imagine that you are a professional baseball player and you’ve just signed a deal with a major-league team. In your contract, $18 million is guaranteed only if you appear at the plate for a minimum number of times. As you step up to bat for the 1,080th time in two seasons, you have just realized you are guaranteed to receive that $18 million in the future…no matter what.

This is what happened to the Detroit Tigers’ Magglio Ordonez. Tuesday night, he stepped up to the plate for his 1,080th time in two seasons. By doing this, Magglio satisfied a big portion of his contract which now guarantees him his $18 million 2010 option.

Many teams such as the Tigers are using these types of clauses so that they might be able to have some sort of control over funds being paid out to players. Although sneaky, managers sometimes bench or platoon a certain player (Ordonez was benched AND platooned); of course, the teams must have a legitimate reason for doing so.

I know that if there was $18 million to be had in my favor, I’d make sure I was practicing and staying healthy to get those appearances or at-bats.