Hey, what do you know… the post season isnt even over and already the Yankees are making noise. Apparently the Evil Empire picked up the one year, $13 million option they had on Gary Sheffield. So what’s the big news? Sheffield is throwing a fit. Ok, ok, that is nothing new but his reasoning is. He simply doesn’t want to have only a one year contract. Sheffield is quoted as follows:
“This will not work, this will not work at all. I don’t want to play first base a year for them. I will not do that. I don’t know what they’re [Yankees] going to do. Maybe they picked it up just to trade me. If they do that, if I just [go] to a team for one year, there’s going to be a problem.” (fromÂ Espn.com).
Now, keep in mind that Sheffield negotiated this contract HIMSELF. If you remember, we were treated to a back and forth “he’s signed, he isnt” media circus before he eventually signed the contract that he is now angry about having to fulfill.
First of all, let me just say, I’ve about had it with pre-madona sports players signing contracts and then acting like they are meaningless. Whether its TO, Deion Branch, or now Sheffield, if you sign the deal, play it out! In a day and age when players like John Smoltz (among others) restructure their contracts in order to allow their team more flexibility in the free agent markets, these players’ selfish actions should NOT be tollerated. The whole point of a team option is to give the TEAM the choice as to whether to keep the player or not. So Gary, if the Yankees want you to play first base for them for a year, then do it!
There was a time in baseball that the owners held all the power. Before free agency, teams basically owned players and players basically had to accept whatever the owner wanted to pay them. That might be oversimplifying it a bit but you get the point. Free agency swung the pedulum the complete opposite direction and in my opinion, its time for the owners to take some of that power back. I’m sick of seeing players demand trades and holding out. If the NFL owners had been gutsy enough to do it, they could have simply blackballed TO when he pulled that stunt in Philli. You don’t want to play for the team you signed with? Then you’re not playing at all. If you want to get paid, do the job you were hired to do. That one simple move would have put an end to all the pissing and moaning these rich drama queens are so fond of. Lets just hope George Steinbrenner and the rest of the baseball owners realize its time to “Cowboy Up”.