Friday, March 20, 2009

The "Manny clause"

Believe it or not, it's NOT what you might THINK it is:

Players signing with the team will be required to donate a portion of their salary to the Dodgers Dream Foundation, team owner Frank McCourt said Thursday.

"Every future Dodger will be asked to fill in a blank line,'' he said in remarks to Town Hall Los Angeles. "They're making a lot of money, these players. We won't tell them how much to contribute, that wouldn't be right.''

Ramirez agreed to make a $1 million donation when he accepted a $45 million, two-year deal earlier this month to return to the NL West champions. He can void the second season of the deal and again become a free agent.

"He reacted extremely positively to a Manny clause,'' McCourt said. "He really liked it.''
Good stuff. I am obviously in favor of an organization taking a position with regards to both local and national charities. So long as the players are NOT being forced, but only "encouraged", even with a slightly twisted arm to do so. Better to twist an arm and get a donation than get nothing at all.

UPDATED: This is being nicely debated at ShysterBall's house, with most people against a team "forcing" players to make a donation. I understand and respect that, but teams are as much of a local trust/institution as they are a private enterprise and I don't think it's bad that ownership expects its employees to make a donation that will (hopefully) benefit localities. It's not like being forced/"encouraged" by your company to make a donation. I think the public nature of a professional ball club changes the dynamic.


tHeMARksMiTh said...

Yeah, a guy making $100 million could stand to donate a little money. Now, the guys who sign for $1-3 million could also stand to donate a little, but I sure wouldn’t make him donate $1MM. To whom much is given, much is expected.

As for the “knowing where it is going”, that’s nice in theory, but I doubt many of these players really care where it’s going. They want the tax break. If they do care, they probably have their own foundation, and if they do, they should be exempt from this clause, considering their focus is there and are presumably giving money to it.

It’s not like they’re being tithed. Manny gave up 1/45 of his contract. For normal businesses, I don’t know how I’d feel about it, but baseball players can afford it.

Rory The Great said...

I work in a restaurant who's owners give a lot back to charity. A few times a year we do free lunch events to help charities raise money. All the servers are "encouraged" to volunteer for at least one or two a year. I don't have a problem being "volunteered" to do something for a good cause once or twice a year and I am not making nearly the kind of money that a player at the major league minimum makes. I like the idea.