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A Strange Kind of Charity

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I'm sorry. I thought I could let this go, but I just can't:

As he can recall, shortstop Jack Wilson was weighing his long-term future with the Pirates one day in late December, aware he could try free agency after the 2007 season.

He had a somewhat different view:

"I was thinking to myself, 'Oh, wow, what if I don't stink again this year? What if I do well? I'm going to go into my last year. How is this team going to afford me based on the market that's out there?' The more I thought about it, the more I realized all I wanted to do was stay."

I find Wilson's agreement to this contract to be one of the weirdest acts of charity I've ever heard of.

Why would Wilson be concerned about the Pirates affording him if he had a good year? If he had had a good year in 2006 or 2007 and wanted to stay, he would be free to sign a contract with the Pirates then if he wanted. So what Wilson was actually concerned about was having a good year, and then not being able to stay with the Pirates because he could get more money somewhere else. Which means that his reasons for signing this contract, in addition to making no sense, constitute a very bizarrely selfish type of charity.

I'm still annoyed about the contract, but I find Wilson's good-guy act downright obnoxious right now. This is selfish ballplayer-think, and nothing more:

  1. I want to stay with the Pirates.
  2. If I have a good year in 2007, I'll be able to command a lot of money in free agency.
  3. I could sign with the Pirates for less money at that point. Besides,
  4. I already have more money than most people have ever dreamed of, and even at a hometown-discount contract, I'll probably triple or quadruple that amount. Nonetheless,
  5. I've got to follow the money. But I want to stay with the Pirates. Gee whiz! What to do?!??!?
  6. I'll call my agent. The Pirates aren't real smart, so I'm sure he can get them to give me a load of money by using the "Yes!" "No!" "Yes!" "No!" "Yes!" "No!" "No!" "Yes!" Bugs Bunny trick, or something like that. Besides,
  7. What if I do stink next year? And besides,
  8. I'm not eligible for free agency for two more years anyway. Also,
  9. I am so freaking rich! Nonetheless,
  10. I'm really doing the Pirates a favor here. Mr. McClatchy, Mr. Littlefield, people of Pittsburgh - you're all very welcome.
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In other news, Kip Wells will have surgery.