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Steady Income Beats a Buyout

Bobby Bonilla apparently knows this.

SAN JUAN, P.R.—One year from today*, the Mets will add to their payroll a 47-year-old, past-his-prime power hitter who has a reputation as a malcontent—a player who has been retired from professional baseball for nine years and won't play another game again.

Nevertheless, starting on July 1, 2011, Bobby Bonilla will remain on the franchise's payroll for 25 years, collecting an annual salary of $1,193,248.20. Those are the terms the Mets agreed to Jan. 3, 2000, when they bought out the final year of Mr. Bonilla's contract.

* The article is from 2010.

It's incredible that the Mets would choose to pay $30M instead of $6M. Then again, maybe the owners were figuring they wouldn't own the team down the road and were able to foist the balloon payments onto someone else.

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