|Most overpaid baseball players|
From the Page 2 mailbag
Earlier this week, Page 2 listed our top 10 most overpaid baseball players, and we asked you to send us your choices.
After hunting through more than 2,800 e-mails, here is how Page 2 readers ranked these fat-walleted ballplayers. Be sure to vote in the poll at right to crown the most overpaid ballplayer of them all.
1. Alex Rodriguez, Texas Rangers (571 letters)
He's a great ballplayer, arguably the best all-around in the game, but no person is worth $252 million. Definitely not one who "works" three hours a day, for 162 days a year, for 10 years.
The day the Rangers signed this ridiculous contract brought shock and disgust to many hard-working Americans who have to bust their back to make an honest living. What many people make over a year is thrown at this guy in about three plate appearences. What the hell is this world coming to?
The Rangers' front office is much to blame for actually forking over this kind of money to one man. Bud Selig should contract this team based on stupidity alone. Why would a club do this? Do you think one player can can bring you a ring? This just in, John Hart and friends ... you need some pitching. Stop wasting money on hitters and get yourself some decent hurlers. But what will you geniuses do? Keep on buying offense.
Forrest Gump could run a better ballclub than your office personnel. I'm glad you guys have a last-place ballclub. With all the money you have committed to one player, you deserve to be where you are. Keep up the good work ... you clowns!
Tom Hicks is an idiot for paying him this type of money. Nobody, regardless of All-Star numbers, deserves the GDP of a small country to play a game.
The M's scrapped Ken Griffey Jr. and Alex Rodriguez ... classic addition by subtraction. Good thing Rodriguez didn't sign with Texas for the money, though. I guess he prefers being the best player on a bad team rather than a good player on a great team. That right there is the difference between Pay-Rod and Derek Jeter.
How could you put Jeter on the list? His salary is a function of Pay-Rod's. For the Yankees, it was part straight salary because D.J. is still one of the best in the game, part reward because he has helped bring four World Series titles to New York (compared with how many for Pay-Rod?) and the last part is just the price of doing business to keep up with the salary mark that the Rangers have set.
Don't get me wrong, the Yankees have done and continue to do their fair share of setting bad salary trends, but Rodriguez belongs on your list this time, not Jeter.
2. Albert Belle, Baltimore Orioles (282 letters)
As is pointed out in ESPN The Magazine's "Bargain Belles" article, Albert Belle is still being paid $12,368,790 while enjoying official retirement. When you can put together a 25-man roster with nine or 10 All-Stars on it that still costs $3 million or so less than Belle's salary, it's hard to argue that he's not the most overpaid player in baseball.
Q: Who is the most overpaid pro golfer?
3. Jose Offerman, Boston Red Sox (255 letters)
The Sox were forced to move him to first base from second because he was unable to turn a double play. Remarkable really, as he's been raised as a middle infielder. The one thing he can do, and I mean one thing, is go back on balls, but we can't put him in the outfield after he made an error after only three chances this season.
Offerman ... he has the skill and charisma of a 40-year-old, sober softball player.
Jose Awfulman ... oops, I mean 0-for-man ... I mean he and his four-year, $26 million contract given by, ahem, "brainchild" Dan Duquette. This guy was brought in to solidify second base and be a bona fide leadoff hitter -- he has been the complete opposite.
Not only has he been nicknamed "Dr. StrangeGlove," he has not hit higher than .250 since 1999. The worst part about it is that he actually believes he is a good fielder and that there's a conspiracy theory by members of the Boston media who have given him the stigma of a bad-fielding reputation.
As a Red Sox fan, I am counting the days until he follows his boy Duquette out the door where he belongs!
4. Every Single One of Them (214 letters)
And nowadays they're always whining about something -- they don't want to play at night, they don't want to play on Astroturf, they don't want to play when it's cold out, they don't want to play in Montreal. The league is too big and too many teams are desperate to load up their rosters with filler at any price.
I quote Bill Veeck, "I don't mind the high price of stardom, it's the high price of mediocrity I resent."
Let's see ... with 30 players on 30 teams ... that's 900 players. The concept that any one of these jokers deserve a penny of what they earn is a disgrace that you media whores play along with. Overpaid? Name one who isn't.
Any person able to wear what equates to pajamas at their place of work, and be idolized by the viewing public for it, should be happy to do so at any wage. Shame on America for supporting the figures these brats take home. Do what I do -- enjoy the sport by playing recreationally, or support your local high school/college teams by attending their games. In doing so, we avoid sitting one's fat ass down only to hand over real hard-earned money. Put professional baseball (sports) out of business.
My choice is the fan -- he really "overpaid" -- for his ticket ... and his beer ... and all the other junk he bought at the ballpark just so he can pay for every single high-priced player and greedy owner to have lockouts and strikes and continue to ruin our sport.
All are overpaid ... that I can live with. What I cannot handle is this talk of another strike. I'm going nation-wide. Hey, MLB, if you can't reach an agreement and another strike happens, don't bother rushing to settle because -- if and when you come back -- the fans are going on strike.
I think it's time MLB realizes that without us (those who love the game) they have nothing. This movement has already begun and if they lock out, and if they do come back, they'll be returning to empty stadiums. When this buzz gets going, they will not have one single fan in the seats. We're going on strike.
The whole greedy bunch of them. Never has there been a more urgent need for "performance clauses" as now. The owners and players have forgotten about the fans. Remember? The people that pay the freight! The people who come out to watch overrated players being paid by wealthy owners who pass on all their largesse.
Once it was reasonably priced entertainment; not now, nor ever again. One more strike and you can kiss baseball off except in maybe three or four cities in North America. So much the better for all of us "true fans," MLB can die and we get a new league with players and owners who know what side their bread is buttered on.
5. Ken Griffey Jr., Cincinnati Reds (172 letters)
Hate to be the one to bring this up, but isn't Ken Griffey Jr., the former best player in baseball, still making the "best player in baseball" salary? The player who we expected to break Aaron's record didn't even make the 30th man poll ... Don't give me injuries. Cal Ripken he is not. (Then again, who is these days?)
Still, you'd expect him to play in a few more than half the games the past two years. We all understand he took less money to play in his hometown, but did he inform the Reds he was also planning on taking less trips to the plate in response?
The Reds' clubhouse quote on ESPN.com on Tuesday reads, "'4 Reds tickets -- $30, 4 Sodas -- $10, 4 Hotdogs -- $15, Ken Griffey Jr. -- Worthless..." I couldn't have said it better myself.
6. Todd Hundley, Chicago Cubs (157 letters)
On top of that, any pitcher who knows what he is doing (Jon Lieber, Kerry Wood and Mark Prior, now following that lead) would rather throw to Joe Girardi. Sure, he's a switch hitter ... so, that means he fans from both sides of the plate. Hundley is a $6 million per year bust.
Todd Hundley, Fred McGriff, Moises Alou, Alex Gonzalez (combined $24 million). No wonder the "lovable losers" are 13 games under .500 and threatening to occupy the NL Central basement. These four guys have a combined batting average of .244 this year, with a combined 36 home runs. Throw in "Flash" Gordon's $2.8 million (0 IP through July 1), and the Cubs have more than $25 million that could be spent on some players who could actually contribute to this reeling ballcub.
He left the Mets for a team he said he would win a championship with (smirk). Give him some credit though, right? I mean, he's a much better hitter than he is a pitcher.
By the way, if you see him ... ask him how his kids are doing in that phenomenal Colorado school system. To all those educators and Rockies' affiliates over there -- have fun with the Hamptons ... for the next six years!
8. Kevin Brown, Los Angeles Dodgers (123 letters)
Brown didn't come close to meeting expectations when he was healthy -- now what? After the way he dissed San Diego when he left, I have to say his recent problems couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. Also, notice how the Dodgers are in first without him? Classic Ewing Theory case study right there.
I have just one glaring difference. "Big Schmo" should be heading the list. Any derelict that goes off on old teammates like he did earlier in the year against Anahiem and spouts off about the one great year he had, deserves to head any list!
Hey Mo, hit above .214, then you can tell us how great you are!
10. Darren Dreifort, Los Angeles Dodgers (71 letters)
Just like the fool who paid $500 for a Tickle-Me-Elmo doll on Christmas Eve because it was the last one on the shelf, the Dodgers spent way too much on a low quality, poorly made pitcher -- just because he was the last one.
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