<
>

Tax-equalization provision in deal

NEW YORK -- Carlos Delgado wouldn't be taxed by a trade.

The first baseman has a special tax-equalization provision in
the $52 million, four-year contract he agreed to with the Florida
Marlins last week, according to details of the deal obtained by The
Associated Press.

While Florida doesn't have a state income tax, many states with
major league teams do. Delgado doesn't have a no-trade clause and
if he is dealt, the contract requires that the club acquiring him
make up any difference in state and local taxes.

"He'll net out, regardless where he goes if traded, exactly
what he would have netted had he remained in Florida," Delgado's
agent, David Sloane, said Tuesday. "So if it's to a place with
state and city tax, then he'll be made whole for state and city
taxes."

Delgado's contract calls for salaries of $4 million this year,
$13.5 million in 2006, $14.5 million in 2007 and $16 million in
2008. The Marlins have a $12 million option for 2009 with a $4
million buyout, but the option would become guaranteed at $16
million if Delgado accumulates 30 points under a system in which he
gets 10 points for winning the MVP award down to one point for
finishing 10th, 20 points for the World Series MVP award and 10 for
the league championship series MVP award.

Delgado will receive half of each year's salary during the
season, and half each Nov. 30. He also would earn $50,000 if he is
selected to the All-Star team, $500,000 if he is the World Series
MVP, $100,000 if he is the LCS MVP, $25,000 if he wins a Silver
Slugger and $25,000 if he wins a Gold Glove.

He gets $100,000 if he wins the NL MVP award, and has a unique
provision if he finishes second: He gets $50,000, but only if he
finishes behind Barry Bonds, who has won seven MVP awards,
including the last four.

"They said we have a policy that we only pay for winning,"
Sloane said, referring to the Marlins. "What can I say, [Bonds]
has had a monopoly on the MVP."