The document which banned Pete Rose from baseball is up for auction:
Now, Rose’s personal copy of the 1989 agreement—the only other original copy belongs to Major League Baseball—is being put up for bid by Goldin Auctions. In addition to Rose’s autograph, the pact features the signatures of Rose’s attorney, Giamatti and Fay Vincent, the deputy commissioner who ended up succeeding Giamatti.
Bids start at $100,000, and the auctioneer estimates the document could fetch between $500,000 and $1 million.
I presume the varied amounts are a function of the uncertainty of the condition of the document itself. Because based on the way Rose has carried himself since 1989, I could see the document being in pristine condition due to Rose never having read it, or I could see it being totally soiled after he repeatedly wiped his butt with it.
Commissioner Rob Manfred spoke with the media today. Naturally, he was asked various questions about the landscape of the sport, given that superstars Manny Machado and Bryce Harper remain unsigned as spring training begins. Per The Athletic’s Brittany Ghiroli, Manfred said that he thinks the free agent market will begin to move once spring training exhibition games begin. Manfred also said that Harper’s camp suggesting that he wants $400 million back in 2016 was “an impediment” to discussions throughout the offseason.
No word on why Machado is also as yet unsigned, as he did not have a reported $400 million ask.
Manfred’s job is to look out for ownership, so it’s not surprising to see him point the finger at Harper. Consider:
Manfred’s comment comes just months after the Red Sox won 108 regular season games and the World Series with baseball’s largest payroll. And ongoing evidence that there is indeed a positive correlation between dollars spent and team success. We often hear justification for tanking/rebuilding because the Cubs and Astros did it and won championships because of it. When the Red Sox use financial muscle to win a championship, it’s crickets.
Manfred didn’t stop there, however.
An easy way to get baseball’s “glow” back would be for two of the game’s best and most popular players to be in uniform playing games. The first spring training exhibition game will be played on February 22, so it’s not looking like that’s going to happen anytime soon.
Baseball’s “glow” would also come back if more teams were actively trying to win. Instead, one-third of the league is “rebuilding” or otherwise coasting on revenue-sharing. For fans of the Rangers, Orioles, Royals, and Marlins — to name a few — the outcomes of their favorite teams’ seasons have already been decided, so what is there to get excited about?