How About You Pay The Whole Thing?

Michael Silverman surmises that Larry Lizard’s arrival in Japan could mean an attempt by the Sox to renegotiate their bid with Seibu:

"An example of what Lucchino and the Lions representatives could have discussed is a scenario where, for example, the Red Sox are unwilling to move beyond an average annual salary of $9 million. If an acceptable middle ground of $11 million per year for, say, five years would get the Matsuzaka deal done, the Lions could subtract $10 million coming to them from the Red Sox in order to bridge the gap."

If permitted, and Silverman writes that this kind of dealing is part of  the spirit of the bidding agreement, then more power to the Sox. It just strikes me as an odd thing to be able to do. I guess the amount they can renegotiate is limited to a certain extent. If the Sox tried to reduce the bid to a number below $38 million (the Mets’ second place bid), couldn’t Seibu ask to start negotiations with the Metropolitans? Or wouldn’t it be viewed as a bad-faith gesture on the part of Boston? Or, perhaps, all major league clubs understood this post-bid process when they calculated their eventual proposed bids? And each bid was intended to be above the actual number they would pay Seibu in the end. Anyway, it seemed weird to me. But I’m the last person who should be writing about the business of baseball. Just was wondering if anyone else found it too good to be true for the Sox.

11 comments… add one
  • I also thought it was odd, considering it sort of undermines the bidding process, but not totally, like some of the other things I have read as being “legally possible.”
    From what I have read of the posting agreement, there isn’t really anything in the agreement that prevents this.
    I’m wondering if Boras will make a stink, I mean, it’s more money for him.
    The other thing to keep in mind is this would count towards the salary cap, moving money from the bid to payroll, which from an onfield product perspective changes things a bit. A portion of the bid now DOES affect the team as a whole, which it didn’t before.

    LocklandSF November 28, 2006, 2:17 pm
  • Sorry, Lux Tax, not Salary Cap, but you know what I mean.

    LocklandSF November 28, 2006, 2:18 pm
  • If that is the case, I guess the Sox were in some way fortunate (or smart) that there weren’t any bids within closer range to theirs. For instance, if the Mets had bid $48m, then this gambit wouldn’t work because I doubt shaving $3m would make much difference to the contract negotiations.

    Sam November 28, 2006, 2:33 pm
  • Sam, it might be exactly why the Sox placed such a high bid — figuring that most teams stayed around or below the $35M line at most.
    Anyway, the rumor that the Mariners got a kickback from the Ichiro posting to help get the deal done has been reported so often it’s assumed to be true, so I’m guessing that such a scenario — which has more qualifying words and phrases in it than I’ve seen in a long time — would have been widely presupposed by all the teams involved in the bidding.

    Paul SF November 28, 2006, 4:00 pm
  • Answer me one thing, Paul, in your role as site co-host: why are there people still posting on the Derek & Stacey thread? How do they even find that thread?

    Sam November 28, 2006, 4:44 pm
  • lol, Sam. My understanding is that there’s some message board out there that has a link to the thread and funnels the nutcakes over to that post specifically, which is why we get so many people who clearly have no interest in the rest of that site but carry on complete conversations on that thread alone.
    It’s almost as if they live in some sort of parallel universe. A funny, kind of sad parallel universe.

    Paul SF November 28, 2006, 4:49 pm
  • They probably think the same about us…

    Sam November 28, 2006, 4:54 pm
  • …i’ve made a couple of comments about the ability of the sox to tinker with the bid after the fact…might be “legal”, but feels a bit unethical…the lions accepted a $51.1m bid, not something less….i guess it’s ok as long as the renegotiated bid doesn’t dip below the #2 bid…that team could legitimately cry “foul”…if there’s a legitimate precendent [i.e. ichiro], then more power to the sox for outwitting the competition…

    dc November 28, 2006, 6:50 pm
  • But no one knows what the #2 bid is, officially. And there’s no way to know.. at least in theory.

    Lar November 28, 2006, 6:54 pm
  • …no, but the lions know, and the #2 team will know the final outcome when all the negotiating is done…mlb has an obligation to make sure that this process doesn’t smell like a rat…

    dc November 28, 2006, 7:02 pm
  • …this just in, from AOL sports:
    Sox Make Pitch to Matsuzaka, Can’t Lower Bid
    Official Quashes Possibility of ‘Side Deals’ With Seibu
    TOKYO (Nov. 28) – The Boston Red Sox cannot reduce their $51.1 million bid for Daisuke Matsuzaka in order to sign him, even if his Japanese team agrees to take less, baseball officials said Tuesday.
    “There are no side deals in the situation,” said Jimmie Lee Solomon, executive vice president of baseball operations in the commissioner’s office. “Everybody’s been assured that’s not allowed, and everybody’s been made aware of the rules.”
    …now that doesn’t mean that the sox won’t try to cut a deal under the radar, like sharing the t-shirt revenue or something, but it’s hard to police every detail…

    dc November 29, 2006, 2:31 am

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