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Cubs don’t want World Series ring recipients to sell rings


There’s something of a controversy going on with the Cubs and their World Series rings. Not with the players’ rings, but the hundreds of rings that the club is giving out to employees and others with team affiliations. From the Chicago Tribune:

The Cubs are in the process of giving out 1,908 pieces of championship-related jewelry, including the championship rings valued at $30,000 to $40,000.

Spokesman Julian Green confirmed the team has asked almost all recipients to sign a document agreeing to insure the rings, report them as income, keep them for personal and not commercial use and offer the Cubs first right of refusal at $1 if they intended to sell them.

To be clear, the vast majority of the rings are not worth that much. Teams order various tiers of rings, with the big honkin’ ones going to the players. Most rings given out are worth a few hundred dollars. It’s those that the team does not want to see on eBay or whatever.

As the article notes, it’s not unprecedented for this sort of arrangement to exist with other bits of honorary hardware. If you win an Oscar or a Heisman Trophy you have to offer it back for a token payment as well. The idea is not to cheapen the award by allowing someone unaffiliated with the award to collect it like so much memorabilia.

Still, all of these things seem like a gift or a reward for a job well done as opposed to reflected glory of the entity handing out the merch. Once one gives away a gift or pays someone for their performance, one usually gives up a claim to the payment. Just my opinion, but retaining an interest in the perceived prestige of the object seems a bit too much to me. Let the people do what they want with their stuff.

Chris Sale exits game with hip contusion

Chris Sale
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Red Sox left-hander Chris Sale made a hasty exit from his final Grapefruit League outing on Saturday after sustaining a left hip contusion. He was struck on the leg with a line drive from the Astros’ J.D. Davis in the first inning and immediately collapsed on the mound. He was able to walk off the field without a noticeable limp, however, and later told reporters that the ball struck a nerve and temporarily stunned his leg. As a precautionary move, the Red Sox pulled him after the incident and will have the left-hander undergo X-rays to rule out any further injury to his hip.

This was expected to be Sale’s last start of spring training. Prior to Saturday’s matinee against the Astros, the 28-year-old southpaw made three starts in camp, allowing five runs, one home run, three walks and striking out 18 batters in 14 innings. He’s still on track to start the season for the Red Sox during their road opener against the Rays next Thursday.