If I signed a contract worth over $390 million dollars total, I’d be smiling ear-to-ear as well. In case you’ve missed it, Mookie Betts has agreed to a near-record extension with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Betts, brought over to LA from Boston last winter, is a 27-year old outfielder who is one of the best player in the game. I guess I’ll have to have him sign with Baltimore (or some team not worth over three billion dollars) in MLB The Show 20.
While Betts didn’t replicate his 2018 numbers hit-for-hit, he remains a tough out and only trails the likes of Mike Trout in terms of how valuable he is for his team. Plus, he’s a Black man who’s followed the lead of folks such as Adam Jones. Therefore, he’s one of my favorites.
One has to wonder, though: what do these super contracts mean for smaller teams or for the world of sports as a whole? I’m of the train of thought that maybe athletes shouldn’t receive damn near half a billion dollars–or in the case of Patrick Mahomes, an actual half a billion dollars. I’m also of the train of thought that these players are the reasons why the team owners make money. Their performances win games, therefore bringing in more money for everyone involved.
Plus, athletes do risk their livelihood (and lives) to play these games. Yes, teachers and health professionals–especially in this COVID world–deserve more money. That’s not up for debate in my opinion. However, athletes do earn their money, even if they’re not saving lives on a regular basis.
Back to Betts, the Dodgers open the abbreviated 2020 season against the San Francisco Giants tomorrow on ESPN. I, for one, will be tuned in to see how the Mookie Era begins in LA.