There is an attendance incentive in Edwin Encarnacion’s contract

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This is not something you see every day: Jon Heyman reports that Edwin Encarnacion‘s new contract with the Indians has a clause via which he can get around $1 million a year extra based on the Indians’ attendance numbers.

It’s not hard to see why the Indians would gladly pay for that. They’ve have had four straight winning seasons and are coming off of a World Series trip, but they have consistently been near the bottom of the league in attendance. They were 28th in the majors in 2016, outdrawing only Oakland and Tampa Bay. They were 29th in both 2014 and 2015. The last time they weren’t either 28th or 29th was 2011, in fact. They have not drawn two million fans since 2008.

Can Encarnacion help boost attendance? It’s hard to see how a single player can move the needle too much by himself. At the same time it may be easy money for him. Even if the Indians do have a lot of trouble drawing people, even after good years, a World Series appearance is a step above that. It, in and of itself is likely going to improve things a good bit, and when it does, Encarnacion can take the cash and credit.

It’s not a major thing of course — his base salary is 20 times any incentive he can get — but it’s interesting all the same.

No lease extension, but Orioles and governor tout partnership

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The Baltimore Orioles and Maryland Gov. Wes Moore announced a joint commitment to what they called a “multi-decade, public-private partnership” to revitalize the Camden Yards sports complex.

The statement from the team and the state’s new governor came Wednesday, the deadline for the Orioles to exercise a one-time, five-year extension to their lease at Camden Yards. The team was not planning to exercise that option, according to a person with knowledge of the decision. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the club hadn’t announced its decision.

With no extension, the lease is set to expire at the end of this year, but the team and the Maryland Stadium Authority can keep negotiating. Wednesday’s joint release seemed to be an attempt to calm any nerves in Baltimore about the team’s future.

“I am looking forward to continuing to collaborate with Governor Moore, his administration, and the Maryland Stadium Authority in order to bring to Baltimore the modern, sustainable, and electrifying sports and entertainment destination the state of Maryland deserves,” Orioles CEO John Angelos said.

“We greatly appreciate Governor Moore’s vision and commitment as we seize the tremendous opportunity to redefine the paradigm of what a Major League Baseball venue represents and thereby revitalize downtown Baltimore. It is my hope and expectation that, together with Governor Moore and the new members and new chairman of the MSA board, we can again fully realize the potential of Camden Yards to serve as a catalyst for Baltimore’s second renaissance.”

Republican Larry Hogan, the state’s previous governor, signed a bill last year increasing bond authorization for M&T Bank Stadium, home of the Baltimore Ravens, and Camden Yards. The measure allowed borrowing of up to $600 million for each stadium.

“When Camden Yards opened 30 years ago, the Baltimore Orioles revolutionized baseball and set the bar for the fan experience,” Moore, a Democrat, said Wednesday. “We share the commitment of the Orioles organization to ensuring that the team is playing in a world-class facility at Camden Yards for decades to come and are excited to advance our public-private partnership.”

Angelos recently reaffirmed that the Orioles would stay in Baltimore, although he dressed down a reporter who asked for more clarity on the future of the team’s ownership situation. Angelos was sued last year by his brother Lou, who claimed John Angelos seized control of the Orioles at his expense.