With the start of NBA Free Agency today, we will continue to debate the ridiculous contracts that teams will throw out to players. Today in MLB history, we take a look at Bobby Bonilla. Bonilla is 53 years old and is still being paid by the New York Mets organization. He will be paid $1.19 million today, July 1st, and the same amount every July 1st through 2035. He has not played in the majors for 15 years and has not played for the Mets in 17 years. So one might ask, how the hell is this possible? Well let's take a look.
Bonilla signed a 5 year $29 million contract with the Mets in 1992, making him the highest paid MLB player in the league. Bonilla's production was sub-par and he was traded to the Baltimore Orioles in 1995. He bounced around to the Marlins and Dodgers before being traded back to the Mets in 1998. Once again, the production did not exceed the expectations of the contract and he was released in 1999. Here is where it gets interesting. Bonilla and the Mets made a deal which deferred his contract for 10 years, allowing for the team to have more cap space to sign free agents in the 2000 season. The team would then pay Bonilla $1.19 million in return from 2011-2035, which equates to the $29.8 million that they owed him. Yes that is right, Bonilla will be getting paid every July 1st for another 19 years, for doing absolutely nothing.
To put that deal into perspective, he is getting paid more than Met's starting pitchers Jacob DeGrom, Noah Syndergaard, and Steven Matz. The funny part is that Bonilla is not the only player on the Mets being payed deferred money. According to ESPN, former payer Bret Saberhagen is being paid $250,000 per year through 2029. The Met's just love these deferred deals. I need to know how to get in on one of these deals. My question for the Mets is, who is next?