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A New York Yankees blog by Chad Jennings and the staff of The Journal News


Did Schilling create an ethical dilemma?

Posted by: Peter Abraham - Posted in Misc on Nov 07, 2007 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

As you know by now, Curt Schilling signed a one-year deal with the Red Sox. But what you may not know is that he has a clause in the deal that gives him $1 million for getting just one vote in the Cy Young Award voting.

He explained it all in in his blog.

As an officer in the New York chapter of the Baseball Writers’ Association of America, this is very troublesome to me.

Our group votes on the major awards (MVP, Rookie, Cy Young and Manager of the Year) and it’s something 99 percent of us take seriously. But having a clause like the one Schilling has creates a mountain of ethical issues.

Every AL city gets two votes for each award. In big markets, the votes are divided up. You might get MVP one year, Manager of the Year the next. But two people who cover the Red Sox will get votes on Cy Young in 2008.

We usually learn sometime in the summer what we’re voting for. In the case of Cy Young, you vote for first, second and third. Let’s say Schilling goes 15-9 with a 3.95 ERA next season. He’s not the Cy Young, but you can make a case he deserves a third-place vote.

Your one vote gets him $1 million. What is keeping some writer from saying, “Hey, Curt, I’ll vote for you. I want $500,000.”

It’s wholly unethical. But every business has unethical people. $500,000 is serious coin for a reporter. People have gambling problems, drug problems, etc. What’s keeping Schilling from agreeing to the deal? He’s gets $500,000 he wasn’t counting on.

On the other hand, let’s say the two people with votes in Boston don’t vote for Schilling and he finds out why they are. What if he resents them and tells his teammates, “Hey, these SOBs cost me $1 million.” How are those people supposed to cover the Red Sox now?

Hopefully Major League Baseball finds a way to discourage such incentive clauses. Or maybe the BBWAA should pass a rule saying that in five years, we will deem ineligible any player who has such incentive clauses.

I’m not against incentive clauses. But tying them into voting done by reporters who cover teams is a slippery slope. It’s asking for trouble.

 
 

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95 Responses to “Did Schilling create an ethical dilemma?”

  1. Phil November 7th, 2007 at 1:12 am

    wouldn’t that cause a tax issue for both Schilling and the crooked reporter (it’s hard to just give out large sums of money) and wouldn’t that likely draw Comrade Bud’s ire to Schill, and all sorts of long term professional problems to the crooked reporter?

  2. mel November 7th, 2007 at 1:18 am

    Would it better to have the incentive be based on a Top 5 or Top 10 finish?

  3. tort November 7th, 2007 at 1:29 am

    totally agree.

  4. BillyJoBob November 7th, 2007 at 1:31 am

    It is unethical but only slightly more annoying than Ortiz campaigning for himself for MVP.

  5. whoa November 7th, 2007 at 1:31 am

    Has MLB approved the contractual provision yet? Isn’t it within their purview to pass on all player contracts?

    btw, If A-Rod did something similar, Schilling would be killing him to every media outlet, and in this instance, rightly so.

  6. Cliff November 7th, 2007 at 1:32 am

    Of course the biggest problem there is the BBWAA’s bizarre voting system. It’s the 21st century, why can’t every member vote for every award? It’s bad enough that the award voting has not been extended to electronic media reporters (and that means radio and TV as well as on-line reporters). If the reason that not every member is allowed to vote for every award is a fear that the larger markets would dominate the awards because of reporters playing favorites for the players they cover, then maybe that’s the ultimate proof that the BBWAA shouldn’t be the body voting on these awards in the first place.

  7. GoSox November 7th, 2007 at 1:47 am

    Will the hypocrisy ever end?

    I don’t remember you complaining about the fact that myriad Yankees have bonus clauses in their contracts tied to post-season awards voted on by the writers. If a writer doesn’t vote for Slappy McBluelips for MVP and he finds out, wouldn’t he have the same complaint against that writer? And it’s not just winning awards — Yankees (Abreu, to name one) have clauses where they get paid for “top 3″ finishes for some awards, so an individual vote could directly impact whether or not he gets the bonus.

    Either all such clauses are a problem or none are. What a surprise that you only bring this up in the context of a Red Sox’s contract.

  8. Carson November 7th, 2007 at 1:54 am

    What a surprise that you only bring this up in the context of a Red Sox’s contract.

    Hey Jackass,

    This is a Yankee blog. I don’t see any Sox blogs out there that are praising the Yankees and showing an overly neutral POV, so why would you expect the blog of a YANKEE beat writer to not pick on the Sox?

    Have you ever heard of catering to your market?

    Besides, a top 3 finish is MUCH different than one single vote. It’s much harder to bribe your way to a top 3 finish than to bribe a single person for a vote.

  9. Brandon (I want Arod but fire Boras first, please land me a Kazmir) November 7th, 2007 at 1:57 am

    Teams were waiting to find out which prospects the Marlins would want for Cabrera, their 24-year-old third baseman.

    “We don’t know yet. We’ll probably know by tonight,” said Hank Steinbrenner, son of Yankees owner George Steinbrenner. “My sense is that it might be too much but we’ll see. It’s early.”

    Cabrera talks

  10. BooSox November 7th, 2007 at 1:59 am

    oh for crying out loud, it OBVIOUSLY takes MORE THAN 1 VOTE to get a TOP 3 finish. it’s not rocket science.

  11. Rob November 7th, 2007 at 2:16 am

    Well said Peter. As a former Journo – I totally agree with you.

    Hey GoSox – you are dopey. The Yanks NEVER give performance incentives to ANYONE. They inherited A-Rod’s lame deal which will cost them 1.5 Mil when he wins the MVP – but they don’t structure any contract like that. The Yankees believe in pursuing who they want, paying top dollar and expecting performance. Don’t come in here with that junk.

  12. Peter Abraham November 7th, 2007 at 2:19 am

    How to represent, Sox fans.

    Schilling gets $1 million if he gets just one vote. Not finishing in third. A vote. One single vote. In a context you will understand, one beer.

    I’m also using him as an example. I’m saying all incentive clauses tied to voting by the media are a bad idea.

    Try to start a discussion on ethics and instead you get the “Go Sawx” dopes.

  13. Brandon (I want Arod but fire Boras first, please land me a Kazmir) November 7th, 2007 at 2:21 am

    Pete we need you to get breaking news tomorrow get some rest man :D

  14. Rob November 7th, 2007 at 2:22 am

    Of course it’s an unethical clause – and should be struck by the commissioner.

    Needless to say Abreu’s contract was negotiated by the Phillies – any other shining examples of the Yankee hypocrisy?

  15. A-Hype November 7th, 2007 at 2:33 am

    These “Kick-backs” are dangerous.

    This is how Bush got the Supreme Court to rob the election from Gore.

  16. Rob November 7th, 2007 at 2:34 am

    Bringing politics in here is crass – go away.

    BTW – you’re a nut.

  17. A-Hype November 7th, 2007 at 2:36 am

    get a sense of humor – it’s a joke.

  18. 213 AreaCode November 7th, 2007 at 2:39 am

    Pete- You’ve had your drink (well earned); now get to bed. We’re all going to be sitting around refreshing the Blog all day tomorrow (I mean today)again & we need you sharp as always. 38Pitches.com mentioning his last year in the game (I’ll believe it when we’re not reading about his ’09 deal in 12 months) makes me just want to start Spring Training now more than ever. Let’s be done w/him once & forever.
    Carson-thanks for typing what everybody here feels; there are plenty of venues if readers want to see what BoSawx rooter thinks. I don’t. That’s why I’m here.

  19. Rob November 7th, 2007 at 2:40 am

    Jokes are funny – you, my friend are not.

  20. Mehdi hates Randy LEvine November 7th, 2007 at 2:47 am

    When will the Red Sox fans endless puns never end. A-Fraud, Pissada, and so on. Most fans have these silly puns on names but, Red Sox fans seem to be the most guilty of the bunch. Hey I don’t have to make up silly names for Red Sox players like Schilling and Beckett. I have tons of names for them already but if I wrote them down here Pete would probably have to delete the post, so I’ll just jot down a few here for those two that aren’t puns and are completely apt. Cretin, Scum, Muppets and so on.

  21. Pissada November 7th, 2007 at 3:39 am

    Yo “Mehdi Who Hates Randy Levine” (whatever, you should hate Cashman, too, for running after Torre to plead with him to take the deal)

    Pissada is actually pretty funny and I’m pretty sure it was made up by a Yankee fan.

    The origin of the name is Posada allegedly soaks his hands in his own urine before a game to toughen his skin for a firmer grip on the ball and perhaps bat. Hey, whatever helps you play better defense. Hence, Pissada (“is” in place of “o”).

    Peter if/ when you have a Q & A with Jorge, ask him this:

    Do you soak your hands in your own urine before a game?

    HAHAHAHA.

  22. iYankees November 7th, 2007 at 4:16 am

    Eh, I understand your position. That can be tough given the context of it all and the system’s structure, allowing this to be called into question. Nontheless, my favorite part of his new contract is still the “fat clause”.

    I wrote about it in my blog, along with a bunch of other things. As a constant PA reader, my blog fails in comparison but is still pretty cool for some fan analysis and what not.

    http://thebronxzoo.wordpress.com/

  23. rs November 7th, 2007 at 5:11 am

    If it doesn’t create an ethical dilemma for Shilling, it doesn’t create one for any writers.

    He’s made over a hundred million in his career and wants to spend the rest of his life in Boston with his family, presumably with lucrative local endorsement deals for the duration. There’s not much incentive for Curt to bribe some hack for a 3rd place vote. He doesn’t need the money, and his bona-fides already speak for themselves. Theo threw that in so he’d get on the treadmill this winter.

    Total non issue.

  24. Mark November 7th, 2007 at 5:49 am

    I’m not surprised at what ol’ Paintsock does anymore. From putting that paint(yeah right, blood)on his sock to this, I’d say he has become the new face of the Bosox.

  25. gargoyle November 7th, 2007 at 5:56 am

    When ARod is playing 3B for the Red Sox in 2008 will they still call him Slappy McBluelips?

  26. Nicholas Name November 7th, 2007 at 6:16 am

    Let’s list all the nicknames for Alex Rodriguez:

    A-Fraud, A-Hole, A-Choke, A-Sod (from the British lol), Pay-Rod, Me-Rod, Choke-Rod, Lightning-Rod

    What is the origin of Slappy McBluelips? I’m guessing the slap part is when he slapped the ball out of whatever Red Sox player’s hand running down to 1B but what is McBluelips? He’s not Irish and from looking at his wife he’s blue somewhere else if ya know what I mean ;)

    Any others?

  27. Andrea November 7th, 2007 at 6:17 am

    If a player who bats (i.e. non AL pitcher) does not wear batting gloves, chances are he urinates on his hands. It’s gross, but it’s something in his pee that toughens up his hands. So Posada, Mientkiewicz, Moises Alou. That’s all I can think of a 6am, but it grosses me out.

  28. Pissada November 7th, 2007 at 6:50 am

    Other M.L.B. players piss on their hands too?!! LOL.

    Doug Mientkiepiss, Moises Pissou

    These guys take part in the handslapping after victories.

    Jorge (to Derek at some restaurant after a game):
    You wanna finish my fries?

    Derek: No thanks bro.

  29. Doreen November 7th, 2007 at 7:19 am

    Nicholas Name -

    Someone the other day (Mike R?) called him ATM-Rod. That was my all-time favorite.

  30. Tommy November 7th, 2007 at 7:27 am

    The ethical dilemna that may or may not exist seems to arise from a lack of faith in the BBWAA.

    Does Posada still do that, or is it all a myth?

  31. * * THEE BOSTON BUGLE * * November 7th, 2007 at 7:29 am

    Sources say Schilling will get a separate “plump” bonus for every dozen of donuts he eats before each start. Donut reps in the stands will be watching for an expanded girth.

  32. murphydog November 7th, 2007 at 7:35 am

    I agree that conditioning the receipt of a one million dollar bonus on one vote under a system where the votes come from two local scribes is inviting trouble. As they say in the legal profession, sometimes the appearance of impropriety matters as much as impropriety itself.

    The Commissioner’s Office does look silly here. Selig and his boys have been pretty sleepy when it comes to the general topic of “the integrity of the game.” (Steroids? What Steroids?) In a game with serious problems just under the surface (steroids, other PEDs, race issues, incredible greed) the Commissioner ought to be a lot more proactive in the integrity area.

    But we’re forgetting a responsible party here. The Red Sox had to agree to the clause. Schill asked, but they had to agree before there was a contract. (Unless the Sox proposed it first, which kind of makes it worse). So Theo and the other folks who run that team and agreed to this b.s. have to go in the pot too.

    Players ask for all kinds of crap in negotiations. The team has to draw a line somewhere or else it reflects on the ownership as well. Frankly, it bothers me less that Schill would ask for this than that the team would agree to it as an “incentive.” Give him the g.d. million if the only thing he has to do to earn it is get one Cy Young vote.

  33. Yanksrule57 November 7th, 2007 at 7:40 am

    Peter,

    Maybe these types of clauses explain some of the bizarre voting seen on the past from BBWAA members. Maybe some of the shenanigans you describe have already occurred.
    It really makes one pause and think.
    You are absolutely correct about removing the potential for conflict of interest (COI). I am retired military and work now as a Government contractor. COI issues are something we must be alert for every day, as do professionals in many other industries. Why should sports writers be exempt from such basic ethical standards?

  34. Doreen November 7th, 2007 at 7:49 am

    murphydog -

    I’m with you. Just give him the extra $1 million. Because, you’re right — just the appearance of a possible impropriety is enough to bring the situation into doubt.

    Plus – it really does say to the public that money is so flush in baseball right now, that they can throw away $1 million on, basically, a little gest. It’s rather disgusting, when you think what that $1 million could do in the real world.

  35. Nicholas Name November 7th, 2007 at 7:55 am

    Doreen

    ATM-Rod? Ehhhh too mouthy. Bor-Rod (Boras + Rodriguez) is a new one.

    I saw someone not on this blog call him Alex Arthropodriguez (arthropod, insect) and strained my abdomen from laughing so hard.

  36. Pissada November 7th, 2007 at 8:03 am

    Andrea

    I should hope they wash their hands. That habitual practice is disgusting, and I think it’s funny you mentioned it like it’s some ordinary/ common practice which I guess it is cuz you’re not joking (or are you?) My hands are pee-free thanks.

    B.t.w. YOU brought up Mientkiewicz and Alou, not I, so lighten up.

  37. murphydog November 7th, 2007 at 8:17 am

    I have an idea… MLB hires an outside auditor to audit all contracts with incentive clauses not contingent on performance alone. Test any contract that has an incentive come due contingent on voting results. It wouldn’t be too expensive and wouldn’t take that long to examine three years’ worth of contracts with suspect incentive clauses.

    Players and teams usually ask for things as incentives that they think there is a shot at achieving based on performance. So, is it evidence of fraud or impropriety if, say, Beckett had a Cy Young bonus clause and he wins the award? Of course not. But anomalous patterns will stand out.

  38. Andrea November 7th, 2007 at 8:17 am

    It is disgusting. But hardly uncommon. I’m not sure they still do it. Or even if those guys all do it. I just heard rule of thumb is that if they don’t wear gloves, chances are that do it to toughen up their hands. Just a little baseball fact.

  39. murphydog November 7th, 2007 at 8:21 am

    My understanding is that Po only uses the “golden” technique during ST, not all season. (“Not that there’s anything wrong with that…”)

    I know superstition and tradition die hard in the MLB, but pickle brine wouldn’t do the same thing?

  40. murphydog November 7th, 2007 at 8:25 am

    “You probably get more pee on your hands than you realize.”

    Andrea?

  41. DHC November 7th, 2007 at 8:28 am

    Nicholas, I’ve been calling him Bo-Rod on several boards since the last game of the WS.

  42. jennifer- congrats JOE G November 7th, 2007 at 8:29 am

    Hey GO SOXS. If I am correct the YANKEES don’t include incentives in contracts they issue. Those contracts were issued by other TEAMS!! SO GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT. YOU have to admit that incentive is stupid. Just give him the million. ONE VOTE and he gets it, Pete is right it raises ethical questions.

  43. jennifer- congrats JOE G November 7th, 2007 at 8:31 am

    PETE great retort!! LOL

  44. Tony NJ November 7th, 2007 at 8:36 am

    DId you expect anything like this from such a classy and thoughtful guy like Curt Schilling????

  45. jennifer- congrats JOE G November 7th, 2007 at 8:36 am

    Hey Pete since you are a voter, can you explain how David Wright with over 20 errors and 10th in fielding percentage wins the gold glove? Looks to me like a popularity contest. We don’t have to look any further than when Palmerio won it playing 20 some games at first over TIno.

  46. Andrea November 7th, 2007 at 8:37 am

    Murpheydog: I was just taking a shot at a sox troll. Forgive me?

    And I was trying to remember pickle brine. I couldn’t remember what it was called. Thanks. And I agree. If peeing on my hands made me millions, you better believe I’d do it in a second.

  47. MoPoRo November 7th, 2007 at 8:41 am

    The Yankees don’t offer incentives, yet that is what they did with Torre’s offer.

  48. Dee November 7th, 2007 at 8:43 am

    it is definitely a concern. But I can also see it working against Shilling. Unless he has a 19win season next year(LOL), I can see voters shying away from even considering voting for him just to avoid looking suspicious. So wouldn’t that in a way hurt him?

  49. MoPoRo November 7th, 2007 at 8:44 am

    There are a lot of antibotics in urine. In poor countries the beggars would ask to be peed on to help heal the various sores on their bodies.

    While peeing on the hands isn’t something that sounds nice, it isn’t as bad as some people are making it out to be.

  50. jennifer- congrats JOE G November 7th, 2007 at 8:45 am

    This makes me feel a little better

    “The Mets are interested; they’ve contacted us,” Posada said. “The
    Mets, the Marlins, Toronto, all of them are interested.”

    Does Posada have an interest in any of those clubs?

    “Let’s not get ahead of ourselves,” he said. “First we’ve got to sit
    down with the Yankees and talk and see what they have to say.”

  51. Bryant November 7th, 2007 at 8:48 am

    The Red Sox got very creative with Schillings incentives. I see a Jenny Criag or Nutrisystem commercial in his future to further enhance his income potential:

    “$2M in weight clauses ($333,333 each for maintaining weight in 6 random weigh-ins, one per month, during season)”

  52. jennifer- congrats JOE G November 7th, 2007 at 8:49 am

    You need to read the entire article. It is on newsday for some reason the link to the article won’t post.

  53. Will November 7th, 2007 at 8:53 am

    The BBWAA should be stripped of the award voting because they have repeatedly proven to be incompetent (no surprise if you read most of them during the season). If corruption is also a problem, then maybe the organization should be disbanded. Besides, I doubt Schilling is going to risk the legal trouble of offering someone a bribe to make less than 10% of his annual salary. Also, how could Schilling ever trust that the reporter wouldn’t simply take Schilling’s bribe offer and turn it into a national story. The scenario presented is so unlikely, it’s almost laughable.

    It is nice to see Schilling stay loyal to his team though. It’s funny how he wasn’t insulted by a one year base pay cut with incentives that could bump the payout to his prior year’s salary. Too bad Joe Torre didn’t have the same loyalty to the Yankees. How ironic is it that Torre went after the most guaranteed money (and sabotaged another manager in the process), while Schilling gave a hometown discount to stay in a job he professed to love.

  54. Doreen November 7th, 2007 at 8:57 am

    Torre turned down the Yankees offer because there was no room for negotiation. That’s the bottom line. It was not about the money for either side. It was about the years, and it was about negotiability.

  55. Laura November 7th, 2007 at 8:59 am

    Posada is full of it. He’s not going to the Marlins. What sense would that make? Yeah, I’m going to leave a team that has made it to the postseason each year I’ve played to go to the last place Marlins. Get real, Jorge!

    The Blue Jays aren’t a bad team, but they hate the Yankees (thanks to Slappy McBluelips). Not sure Posada could handle the anti-Yankee talk going on in that clubhouse.

    The Mets are the only ones that I think he would seriously consider. I think his only worry would be alienating Yankee fans.

  56. jennifer- congrats JOE G November 7th, 2007 at 9:01 am

    Laura re-read what he said. HE stated who was interested, and basically said he wasn’t interested. His wife answered the question “WHAT DO YOU THINK” regarding if he wanted to return to the Yankees. The article points out he has many ties to NY including most importantly his sons doctors.

  57. sunny615 November 7th, 2007 at 9:02 am

    Jennifer congrats JOE G- Now bring Jorge back!
    November 6th, 2007 at 7:15 pm
    Can anyone point me in the direction of where the codes for the blog.

    coding for Pete’s Blog

  58. pat November 7th, 2007 at 9:05 am

    All Schillings incentives are a joke. Do incentives count against Luxury Tax? Is that why this deal was structured like this? If he needs $2M on top of the $8M guaranteed money to stay in shape I would question his motivation for wanting to play. Getting into shape and pitching for the entire year basically guarantees him $11-$13M.

  59. Anthony November 7th, 2007 at 9:08 am

    I understand your points, but I don’t think this is so likely. Also, even if it does happen, what’s the big deal? So he gets one vote, that doesn’t make him Cy Young. The way I see it, the only people who would really be hurt are the Red Sox, who would have to pay out an extra million, and that’s all good in my book.
    Besides, who actually cares about these awards anymore other than hacks in the media and people that need to feel vicarious glory? They don’t settle any discussions on who is actually the best pitcher or the MVP or the true gold glover at any position. I have my own opinions on those that should win these contests and I think everyone else does as well. Bartolo Colon has won the Cy Young. That’s all that needs to be said about that award.

  60. sunny615 November 7th, 2007 at 9:13 am

    I think you’re missing the point. By having the incentives be based on people in the media, they open themselves up to possible misconduct via payouts or possibly the reverse of being blackballed by the player. I don’t think this part alone is enough, but like Pete said, it’s a slippery slope – when does it become a factor – when you’re favorite beat writer is banned from the clubhouse because he didn’t vote for one of our players? Or you find out he’s writing puff pieces because he got a $1 mil payout from the winner of an award – how much would to trust his writing then?

  61. randy l. November 7th, 2007 at 9:17 am

    i don’t care about the ethical implications of shilling bribing an unethical reporter for one vote. i do care that for some reason, theo seems to be able to get deals closed with important red sox players and cashman doesn’t seem to be able to do the same thing with yankee players. maybe cashman should get creative and flexible with similar performance clauses(or award clauses) if that’s what it takes to get deals done.
    i don’t care much about awards anyway. i care about the yankees winning. does shilling getting a million extra from an unehical writer voting for him hurt the yankees’ chance of winning games? i don’t see how. if anything, it costs the red sox money. and it costs them more than a million because they are over the cap on the luxury tax. if anything this hurts the red sox so vote away red sox writers. jack up that payroll for the red sox.
    shilling’s contract shows flexibility on theo’s part and the ability to get a contract signed at below market rates. cashman should pay attention because he’s going to have to come up with something to sign rivera and posada without emptying out the vault.

  62. Doreen November 7th, 2007 at 9:19 am

    Pat,

    Yeah, because, heaven knows, $8 million is certainly not enough to motivate someone to show up in top form, and maintain it, in order to do his job.

    I know it’s the just the way things are in this world, but it’s really out of whack. Apparently we must have all this disposable income to be able to afford our diversions — sports, movies, etc. There must be some correlation between how much we’re willing to pay for entertainment and the relative crappy state of the world at large.

  63. Crawling Back November 7th, 2007 at 9:20 am

    Maybe he should have another clause that says if he continues to be an @$$, he gets another million, too ?

  64. sunny615 November 7th, 2007 at 9:26 am

    Cashman’s dealings with Mariano and Posada are different from Schillings – Schilling only wanted a one year deal. Mariano and Posada want multiple year deals, and with players of their age, with the potential for decline, then you get into the tricky areas of years not just money. If Mo and Po wanted one year deals, I guarantee that those deals would have been done 10 days ago. Cash – IMO – is not ready to give four more years to a 36 year old catcher who should hit rapid decline in the next couple of years.

  65. whozat November 7th, 2007 at 9:30 am

    “i do care that for some reason, theo seems to be able to get deals closed with important red sox players and cashman doesn’t seem to be able to do the same thing with yankee players.”

    Hey, here’s a thought…maybe it’s because the situations and people involved are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT.

    Did the Sox just change managers? Did the Sox just lose the ALDS? Did Schilling want to test free agency because he’d never done so before? Was Schilling looking for a multi-year deal? Has Lowell re-signed yet?

    Think before you get cranky.

  66. bob November 7th, 2007 at 9:31 am

    Peter,
    I basically agree with your point, but one of the red-meat premises is slightly wrong. The Cy Young Award vote incentive was proferred by Theo to Schilling, not Schilling to Theo, though obviously Schilling agreed to it. Thus the title of your post should be “Did Theo (and Schilling)…” or “Did the Red Sox Management (and Schilling)…” A more careful reading of Schilling’s blog or attention to the details of the contract as they later leaked out would have made you aware of the fact (or possibly the spin–the cynic in me awakens) that Schilling offered the weight incentive proposal and Theo offered the other two (innings pitched and Cy Young) incentives. On the other hand this is a Yankee blog so expecting you to resist throwing a little red meat in exchange for precision is asking a lot…. A fan of your blog. But also someone who general likes less red meat and more precision. Sorry if someone else has already made this small point. Cheers.

  67. Anthony November 7th, 2007 at 9:36 am

    “when you’re favorite beat writer is banned from the clubhouse because he didn’t vote for one of our players? Or you find out he’s writing puff pieces because he got a $1 mil payout from the winner of an award – how much would to trust his writing then?”

    Come on, you don’t really believe this stuff and can’t really be all that offended by this can you? Why don’t we all agree that we, as Yankee fans, are just looking for things to be upset with about Schilling, because that is what it seems like to me. For me, Schilling himself is enough to make me hate him, I don’t need to make up reasons. A beat writer is not going to be banned by the team because he is refusing to help a player get extra salary from the team. A beat writer who writes puff pieces will fit right in with the crowd and, anyway, what does it matter? Puff pieces are easy to spot and journalism doesn’t really do anything for my appreciation of the sport. The only things I am interested in hearing from journalists are the facts, I don’t necessarily care about their opinions, etc. (No offense, Pete. I do enjoy your blog, but I hold your opinions to the same standard as everyone else’s.) I just don’t think sports is something where editorial opinions are so critical. It’s just a game.

  68. murphydog November 7th, 2007 at 9:37 am

    Andrea:

    Forgiven. Believe me it wasn’t the language, it was the image.

  69. Miller November 7th, 2007 at 9:37 am

    Think really hard to yourself. If you are a writer for a paper making (this is strictly a guesstimate) 60-70,000 a year and a well known, well liked (in that region anyway) perosonality like Curt Schilling came up to you and offered you 500,000 to vote for him, would you do it?

    Sorry to sound unethical folks, but Ive got student loans, rent, car payments and eventually Ill have to worry about my kids going to college. You bet your a$$ Im taking that.

    Pete brings up a great point.

  70. murphydog November 7th, 2007 at 9:39 am

    Buddy Biancalana:

    “Schilling is a huge supporter of George W. Bush, you think he knows the meaning of ethical, or even cares?”

    If Giambi could make a stretch like that, he’d be our ever day 1s baseman.

  71. long time November 7th, 2007 at 9:40 am

    everyone has a price

  72. Buddy Biancalana November 7th, 2007 at 9:43 am

    murphydog-

    Very true, Giambi stumps for Kucinich though. JK.

  73. jennifer- congrats JOE G November 7th, 2007 at 9:49 am

    Good question Pat.

    Thanks sunny!! I’ve got the quoting thing down. :D

  74. Rebecca--Optimist Prime November 7th, 2007 at 9:50 am

    Why are we all in such a pissy mood this morning?

    I get the crap weather and the forecast for snow, but dang, I was in a good mood when I woke up 10 minutes ago!

    Pete–it is unethical, but I have a hard time believing Schilling’s the only one that’s done it–he’s probably just the only one to get caught.

  75. yankee21 November 7th, 2007 at 9:58 am

    randyI; Its possible Schilling negotiated multiple years, and ultimately settled on the 1 yr deal and said that is what he wanted all along. Who knows.

    I have full confidence in Cashman to get the job done contract wise, I don’t worry about it. I’ll take Cashman over Theo any day of the week, he’s not my basis for comparison as far as good GMs.

  76. randy l. November 7th, 2007 at 10:03 am

    “Hey, here’s a thought…maybe it’s because the situations and people involved are COMPLETELY DIFFERENT.”
    the point is that in a negotiation theo is creative and flexible, and that cashman can’t sign a batboy right now. cashman is in a slump. he’s lost the ability to close a deal.
    cashman has picked up a negotiating “virus” somewhere that has made him extremely inflexible. he seems to think that the marketplace is irrelevant to his position. he has become a true believer in his own dogma.
    cashman’s ideal player is a good young one who has no say. historically it’s always been a yankee advantage to be able to pay top marketplace rates for veteran players.
    cashman seems determined to not pay top marketplace rates. why throw away an advantage that the yankees historically have had over other teams?

  77. Grant November 7th, 2007 at 10:04 am

    I hate Schilling

  78. Grant November 7th, 2007 at 10:05 am

    Randy, that is ridiculous drivel

  79. Pete S November 7th, 2007 at 10:16 am

    Schilling hasn’t done that yet Pete just says that the contract creates the possibility of such a situation. But you cannot just give someone $500,000, the reporter and Schilling would have to declare it and the reporter would have to pay capital gains taxes, unless the two tried to defraud the IRS which there would be no reason for Schilling to try and do. what is more likely is that if he has a decent season some local reporter just gives him a 3rd place vote, would they want a gift sure but $500,000 cmon…wishful thinking

  80. Bryant November 7th, 2007 at 10:22 am

    Randy
    I agree somewhat. Yankees are too firm in decisions when it comes to not negotiating in season, not extending in season, and worry too much about not being used by the rest of the league. I like what the Mets did with Reyes and Wright last year. Locked up solid players for longer term deals at reduced prices. You pay a little more upfront but it saves money on the back end when guys are in prime years. Yanks should do the same with a player like Cano.

    Many here said A-Rod should have waited the 10 days after the World Series because the questions about the other free agents on the Yanks would be answered. Today is day 10 and so far no questions have been answered.

  81. randy l. November 7th, 2007 at 10:22 am

    grant-
    i knew in the spring and said so on the blog that cashman was making a major strategic blunder when he didn’t sign extensions with rivera and posada.
    i don’t want cashman fired. he’s the firewall keeping hank away from baseball matters, but he’s got to get a grip on the realities of the marketplace or he’s going to almost make deals just missing out because of his inflexibility.
    “almost” being the operative word.
    cashman is in a tough negotiating position because of his own choice to wait. he made the wrong choice in the spring. now he pays the price for that error. it’s not complicated.

  82. yankee21 November 7th, 2007 at 10:33 am

    In retrospect it is easy to say Cash made the wrong choices last spring, but were they reasonable choices given the facts?

    He didn’t tie up a lt deal with an aging Mo? Don’t forget Mo’s injury that caused him to miss most of September 06.

    He didn’t tie up a lt deal with a 35 yr old catcher coming off a decent year 06? What are the odds Po would have a great season at 36, and Mo remaining virtually injury free for all of 07, a full year older.

    IMO, PO and MO will benefit handsomely but you can’t lay their benefits as a result of Cash’ inflexibility.

  83. Ducky Bent November 7th, 2007 at 10:58 am

    Lets forget about ethics for a second. Here we have a man in Schilling, willingly signing for 8 mil + whatever incentives as opposed to out prima donna Pettitte, who more than likely will milk the Yankees for even more than the 16 mil he got last year. If you know Hendricks, Pettitte and Clemens, that’s their MO.

    Meanwhile, Andy’s 2007 was one of a 4.05 era, 1.43 whip, 141 SO and 69 BB. Schilling? 3.87 era, 1.25 whip, 101 k, 23 BB.

    Something is TERRIBLY wrong here and shows the difference between our front offices, GM’s and players. It’s why Boston has won 2 WS since 2004 while we sit with our thumbs up our behinds.

  84. Ducky Bent November 7th, 2007 at 11:01 am

    To add to my above post, age doesn’t really matter here, since both pitchers seem to be year to year pitchers. That said, even though Schilling is 5 years older, I’d take him in a big spot over Pettitte any day and would project the same in 2008. The boy knows how to pitch, regardless of how many mph he’s lost on his heat.

  85. saucy November 7th, 2007 at 11:04 am

    Anyone know who votes for the Gold Glove awards? Is it a private ‘Rawlings’ award?

  86. mac November 7th, 2007 at 12:01 pm

    Pete,
    You are looking at this ethical dilemma upside down. I say you fill out your Cy Young ballot with the Schills name right now. If he gets his one vote, he gets his million which comes out of the Red Sox Pocket. He can go 1-10 and it still cost the Sox a cool million for an over the hill wind bag who will blame his team mates for having a lousy (predictable) year. Give him the vote and do a favor for the home team.

  87. Pocono Chris November 7th, 2007 at 12:22 pm

    Not to ruin a great debate here, but Schilling was joking when he said that incentive was in there.

  88. We Miss Paulie November 7th, 2007 at 12:25 pm

    Hey A Shame,

    Why dont you save those remark for someone who deserves it? Pete is unarguably one of the best and has brought a whole new perspective to how we all enjoy the game of basebal. For the first time, we’re getting a look inside the clubhouse and the winter meetings to see what goes on behind the scenes. It’s been amazing all season and I dont know what we’d do without him now.

    Just because you cant handle one of his really valid opinions doesn’t gve you the right to spout off a personal attack on someone you’ve never met. If you dont agree with him, tell us that and why, but don’t resort to name calling like the childish ahole you appear to be.

  89. You Miss Paulie? November 7th, 2007 at 12:28 pm

    He, We Miss A Crybaby. Does being a good journalist mean fostering unfounded innuendo bordering on slander around the internet on a widely read and ‘respected’ blog? Is that being a good journalist? A good blogger, sure. I can handle things just fine, We Miss a Crybaby, so don’t you worry about me!

  90. Matt Caruso (The Daily Doormatt) November 7th, 2007 at 12:28 pm

    It may sound gross and shocking, but once urine leaves the system, it is sterile. However when it leaves the body, it can pick up other germs.

  91. We Miss Paulie November 7th, 2007 at 12:42 pm

    Shame,

    What, did mommy unplug your video game this morning?

    Or maybe coach didn’t put you in the game? Ever.

    Man, you have some pent up aggression and I guess it helps when you can blow off your steam on a Yankees blog, troll. Why don’t you go back to Boston.com and cry amongst yourselves about how we’re bashing on your fat boy Curt. You’re all always feeling second best to NY and always angry about it.

  92. Buffalohead November 7th, 2007 at 2:18 pm

    That’s a funny joke..Murray Jr. writing about ethics.

  93. li November 7th, 2007 at 5:03 pm

    Much ado about nothing. Free drinks and lap dances garner more positive coverage, certainly, $500,000 deserves a Cy Young vote!

  94. LBC November 8th, 2007 at 10:46 am

    Pete — That dude Carton on WFAN basically did this blog post on air this morning without any attribution. I’d say he owes you one.

  95. Jack Roy November 11th, 2007 at 2:11 pm

    This is really, really stupid. How much is it to ask reporters who have a BWAA vote to use that vote with the bare minimum of professionalism? How likely is it to think that Curt Schilling would actually react to such an unlikely offer with anything other than outrage—and a writeup of it on his blog?

    As for Schilling missing the incentive and the reporters being unable to establish a working relationship with the Red Sox the year after, well, Curt Schilling will have retired by that point. The Cy Young awards are announced well after the end of the season.

    Bottom line, this is a purely invented ethical dilemma. It doesn’t pose any actual risk, and it must be a very slow day indeed for someone to have wasted an afternoon thinking of this. Eff-minus-minus.


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