The money grubbers are back.
They finally stopped crying about their money and decided to play. The Major League Baseball strike is over and the players are on the field getting ready for the 1995 season.
So who won?
Well, ever since the strike began last season, the only thing the players and owners could agree on was not to agree on anything. And they still haven't.
The players and owners didn't really agree on anything, and they have just set themselves up for another strike down the road.
So who is paying the price?
The players are. If you are wondering why your beloved Yankees got rid of Jim Abbott or why the White Sox dumped Jack McDowell, then the answer is simple Ä the owners can't afford them.
The strike financially sunk a lot of teams and the owners simply cannot afford to pay players as much as they did in the past.
Pitcher Dave Stewart, who made $4.25 million with Toronto last season, is only going to make $1 million with Oakland this year. The Montreal Expos, who were loaded with talent last season, lost outfielder Marquis Grissom, starting pitcher Ken Hill and reliever John Wetteland because the Expos couldn't match the of-
fers the players got from other teams.
So whose fault is it?
Well, the root of the problem lies in the outbreak of high salaries in the mid-1980s. First it was $1 million, then $2 million, and now we have players like outfielder Mike Devereaux of the Baltimore Orioles, who is a free agent this year, making $3,375,000 last season. This guy has been playing since 1919 or something like that, and has bounced around the league the entire time. His stats for last year's strike-shortened season were nine home runs, 33 RBI and an astounding .203 average in 83 games. In short, Devereaux was bad.
Does a bad player deserve almost $3.5 million dollars?
No, rather, performance warrants that type of money.
But the players demanded it and the owners paid it.
So what's the solution?
Fire them all. At least, that's what they should have done. Let players that want to play the game play, and the ones who want to bitch about getting $100,000 knocked off their $10 million-a-year contract can sit at their multi-million dollar homes and learn how to play badminton or croquet.
The owners are starting to get it right. Even though there are many players still out there making undeserved millions, some who are not living up to expectations are taking a pay cut or getting shown the door.
Good. It's about time the owners started getting salaries under control. People are starving in this country while these overpaid ballplayers are upset because a million dollars isn't good enough.
The players are just lucky that they can get rich playing a child's game.
They should be thankful for what they have. These men play a sport for money, something most people would sell their souls to do.
They should remember the days when they played little league, when they played for the love of the game, and when having fun was more important than making money.
Patrick Moran is a business and public administration senior and despite what people may think, he is always right. His column appears every Wednesday.
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