January 18, 2005

Lift-off is expected to be an expensive undertaking: Roger, he of the seven-time Cy Young variety, decides to cut the Astros a little slack and request the largest sum in arbitration history. Well, without Beltran, Kent, Miller and the like, they've got the money. Red Sox fans circa 1995, please belly-up to the bar and order up some greivance.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey to baseball at 06:16 PM - 38 comments

I hate people who provide the first post to their FPP. However, apologies for the ESPN link - they just seem to get this stuff first. That said, it seems clear that the gunslinger is for hire this year if the price is right. He already looks like a Met.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 06:18 PM on January 18

He looked like a hero last year...taking a 'pittance' to play for the home team. Now...not so much.

posted by stofer71 at 07:02 PM on January 18

He's a great, but he's just not worth that much money right now. Of course, Pedro wasn't worth what the Mets paid for him either. I suppose one year with both Pedro and Clemens might make the Mets a playoff team, but they need some bats, too. Also, let me take a moment to say f*** Clemens.

posted by Joey Michaels at 07:12 PM on January 18

He looked like a hero last year I think a lot of things when it comes to clemens. Hero has never been one of them.

posted by justgary at 07:56 PM on January 18

If he pitches for Houston or anybody-the figure willl be much less. They needed to throw a number out there today and thats what they did....The Rocket will never go to arbitration. IN the meantime, Espn, Fox and all of the other will have a field day with this. Pure Hype means nothing!

posted by daddisamm at 07:57 PM on January 18

daddisamm's got it right. Both Roger and the Astros know he won't be pulling in $22M next year.

posted by mbd1 at 08:14 PM on January 18

Why won't Roger think of the children! And I mean the ones whose name does not begin with the letter K.

posted by billsaysthis at 08:43 PM on January 18

I think he and his agent are basing the figure on $1 for every stupid, assholish move he's ever made in his life.

posted by wfrazerjr at 10:08 PM on January 18

If I see one more "Last game ever pitched by Clemens" I'm going to yak. How many have we seen so far?

posted by smithnyiu at 10:10 PM on January 18

It is the owners' bonehead moves, going to arbitration with a 22 million potential price tag for a 42 year old pitcher, who have caused these outrageous salaries. Let him retire. Don't set bad precedent.

posted by McLaw at 10:33 PM on January 18

If Clemens was playing out the string, I could understand gripes. But the guy was practically unhittable last season. Who's to say he isn't worth crazy money for another year?

posted by rcade at 10:53 PM on January 18

But the guy was practically unhittable last season. I agree. Who retires after winning the Cy? I'd wait till I sucked and my agent kicked me to the curb, and my wife divorced me and took half of that crazy money, but that's just me.

posted by DirkDiggler at 11:41 PM on January 18

Why don't they make an incentive-laden counteroffer? Pay him $1 million for every time he says either "we" or "team" into a microphone without choking on it. That way, he'll have to get little Kody, Karly, Kramer and Krusty to panhandle for food & gas money outside Minute Maid Field. I'm not a fan.

posted by chicobangs at 12:40 AM on January 19

"Last game ever pitched by Clemens" I'm going to yak. How many have we seen so far? Yeah, who does he think he is, The Who?

posted by scully at 08:25 AM on January 19

Both Roger and the Astros know he won't be pulling in $22M next year. I wouldn't be so sure. With the kind of money number 4 starters are getting this off-season, a one-year $22 million contract for the Rocket doesn't seem out of the question. Randy got his extension - Rocket gets paid too. Maybe the figure isn't exact, but it's probably close - hell, someone will pay him 20 for sure.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 09:25 AM on January 19

From the article: Clemens, who wears No. 22, would be playing his 22nd major league season. How cute.

posted by holden at 09:43 AM on January 19

a one-year $22 million contract for the Rocket doesn't seem out of the question. Does to me. But when you Pavano getting 4y/$40M, it's not out of the question. Hope the agents don't turn MLB into the wild wild west again. Can't live through another strike...

posted by smithnyiu at 09:43 AM on January 19

terrapin, that's the best analogy for Clemens I've seen yet. I consider the little self-entitled twerp to be a poison, not just on the reputation of baseball, but on society in general. The fact that someone so unaware of the world around him is able to excel in a "team sport" doesn't speak well to the alleged collectiveness of baseball. I don't think it's overstating the case to say that he's a tumor on the face of modern culture. I'd like nothing more than for him to take the 2348336948762306 bazillion dollars the Hendricks Brothers have procured for him over the years and fuck off to some gated Houston suburb where I never have to see his dull-eyed meathead face, unsullied by thoughts of anything outside his own personal fantasies of glory, forever. That said, some idiot GM will pay him at least 19 or 20 mill, he'll go 10-10, and there will be another strike at the end of this CBA.

posted by chicobangs at 10:26 AM on January 19

So chico, when exactly did Roger punch you in the neck and beat up your dog?

posted by rocketman at 01:01 PM on January 19

my brother let him play through on a golf course in Houston once. said he was not a very pleasant person. and my brother was like 13 at the time. if you can't be nice to kids.... i'll try not to judge him as a person but I haven't heard too many nice things about him as a person. this is about his professional life. and $22 million (even if it is 'just a number') for a pitcher that will only be out there to help you every 4th day? if, for a moment, we accept $25 million as the ceiling for a non-pitching player in the field that can help you win every game, then how much should a pitcher be worth? i'm not livid, just wondering the justification for making a pitcher the 2nd or 3rd highest paid player in MLB? one that, i dunno, allowed 4 runs in 6 innings and got the loss in game 7 of the NLCS?

posted by gspm at 01:58 PM on January 19

Since MLB arbitration must be either of the submitted figures and there's no way Clemens doesn't match well with Randy Johnson, I don't see how this can't come out in Clemens' favor. Sorry if that's too cold an analysis...

posted by billsaysthis at 03:05 PM on January 19

there's still time before the arbitration hearing for the two sides to work something out. clemens is more likely looking for a figure in the middle, around $17-18 million. when you add that to the $5 million he made last year, that's $22-23 million for 2 years, which isn't unreasonable for a pitcher of his quality.

posted by goddam at 04:21 PM on January 19

rocketman: I didn't say my hatred for everything that prick is or represents was entirely rational. The list of athletes who I think have genuinely Hurt Sports (in the Jon-Stewartian sense) in North America in my lifetime is a short one: John Elway, Steve Francis, Randy Moss, Eric Lindros, maybe Kobe or Spree (actually, nah), there might be one or two more. But Clemens tops my personal fuck-you list. He has pulled the same me-first, team?-what-team? shit everywhere he's gone. Boston, Toronto, the Yankees, and now he's doing it to Houston. He's going through teams like Axl Rose goes through girlfriends, and in my opinion, the sport is worse off for his ugly pampered existence. But like I said, he'll get paid, because he can still strike people out.

posted by chicobangs at 05:00 PM on January 19

(Yes, I just sympathized with the Yankees as an organization. Hush.)

posted by chicobangs at 05:10 PM on January 19

Dont blame Clemens. It is the crap owners that have done this to the game. Roger will win the arbitration and then owners will complain. I would love to see an owner with the balls to tell him to take his arbitration figure and shove it up his ass

posted by McLaw at 05:30 PM on January 19

he can still strike people out Isn't that helping his team? I mean, aside from being kinda dorky (the 'K' thing with his kids, his wife's website), I don't understand what the big deal is. So he gives the batters some chin music from time-to-time, but so does Pedro, and he seems like way more of a jerk than Roger. Of course, I haven't been following baseball for terribly long. Did he do something while pitching for the Sox? Bet on the game? Beat up dogs? Make fun of crippled children? Gimme the goods!

posted by rocketman at 06:20 PM on January 19

I would love to see an owner with the balls to tell him to take his arbitration figure and shove it up his ass Exactly what Boston did in 96. Worked real well. Went from $5.5M to $8.4M in Toronto. That's when I started hating his greed and ego. And his fastball. McLaw is right, but you can't stop the machine.

posted by smithnyiu at 06:23 PM on January 19

A couple of good places to start, rocketman: The Google search for "Clemens jerk" Bill Simmons clues you in

posted by wfrazerjr at 08:30 PM on January 19

Clemens left the Red Sox when the team didn't value his contribution as highly as other teams did, and his multiple Cy Youngs since then show the other GM was right. He may well be a prick for other reasons but not for this one.

posted by billsaysthis at 09:02 PM on January 19

Clemens left the Red Sox when the team didn't value his contribution as highly as other teams did Actually, if memory serves, he demanded a multi-year contract that would have made him the highest paid pitcher in baseball. This coming from a guy that had a 4 year record barely above .500 Clemens gave an emotional interview in which he claimed to long for status as a Red Sox all-time great, finishing his career with the team and joining Ted Williams and Carl Yastrzemski as iconic figures in Boston baseball history. Later the Rocket announced that if he couldn't get what he deserved from the Red Sox, then he would only sign with one of the two teams close to his home and family in Texas. "My family comes first," Roger said. Clemens then signed a multi-year contact with that well known Texas municipality, Toronto, Canada.

posted by DirkDiggler at 10:05 PM on January 19

Sports Economist on the subject. Has some good info on arbitration offer calculations.

posted by yerfatma at 09:05 AM on January 20

Dirk, how many CYs did he win after leaving Boston? And as for the interview, hey, a good negotiator uses the tools he has to reach the desired result.

posted by billsaysthis at 02:24 PM on January 20

I agree totally with his record since, but how many CYs had he won when making his demands? Why don't all pitchers in their 5th year with .500 records ask to be the highest payed pitchers in baseball? I can't argue with his ironman greatness. If I had a team he'd be #1 in the rotation, but don't tell me crying on TV, imploring the Boston fans to rally behind him as the future of the Red Sox is "negotiating". Once you have a net worth of $20 million or more ethics should help guide you a little. How many picup trucks with gunracks and big tires did he need?

posted by smithnyiu at 02:46 PM on January 20

Smithnyiu, $20M is nothing. How much were the top execs at MCI, Adelphia, Enron, AIG and so forth, just to name a recent crew, worth when they committed their dastardly deeds? BillG is worth billions yet he still drives the whip at MSFT's enemiescompetitors.

posted by billsaysthis at 06:51 PM on January 20

Oy gestalt. Not really germane.

posted by yerfatma at 08:53 PM on January 20

Clemens to play for $18M.

posted by mbd1 at 12:14 PM on January 21

Shaughnessy of the Globe must be sharpening his pencils as we speak for tomorrow's paper.

posted by usfbull at 01:53 PM on January 21

They have interns for that at the Globe. That and picking outcomes of games.

posted by yerfatma at 03:07 PM on January 21

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.