- Faith and Fear in Flushing - https://www.faithandfearinflushing.com -

The Things Free Agents Think and Do Not Say

Yeah, I’ll take some questions. First let me get this stupid jersey off. Why am I wearing a jersey over a suit? Come to think of it, why am I wearing a suit? I’m gonna be playing baseball, not asking Congress for a bailout.

Uh, you…what influenced my decision to come here? Money.

You…like I said, money. They made me the best offer.

Best offer — you know, most money, most years. It added up really nicely for me.

Mitigating factors? I hoped I could get more money and more years from another team somewhere else, but the market wasn’t quite what my agent thought it would be, so I grabbed this offer. I’d been on the market long enough, y’know?

Yeah, second row…no, I would’ve gone to any team that gave me the money and the years I was looking for.

Special? Well, it’s always special to make bank. I’m gonna make it here, so I signed with them.

My number? You mean how many years or the value of the total package? My uniform number? I’d hafta look. I dunno. They gave me whatever. I don’t really care about that shit.

Hot chick on the left…what’s it mean to be here? You mean at this press conference? They told me I had to be here.

Oh, on this team? I dunno. Like I said, they’re the ones I signed with.

No, I didn’t have any particular attachment to this team. Why would I? I played with the one team I came up with ’til last July when they dumped my salary and sent me to that other team to help them make the playoff push. I haven’t played for this team before.

Did I want to? Well, I signed with them.

When I was a kid? No, I didn’t think about it when I was a kid. I don’t think I heard of this team until we played them that one series a coupla years ago.

I dunno. I didn’t grow up around here, so I didn’t know anything about this team. Actually, I wasn’t a really big fan of any team. I was playing, y’know? I always thought the kids who were fans were kinda gay. No, not gay-gay — you know, like you and the rest of the reporters.

Yeah, you…the history? We flew in this morning and my agent made sure a car would be waiting for us.

The history of the team? I just told you I’ve never played for this team, so how the hell would I know anything about them?

Um, the fat guy over there with the beard…thoughts on the stadium? I guess this is where I’ll be playing my home games, right? The car took us into a private garage, and I was busy texting on the way over, so I didn’t get a good look. We’re in the stadium right now, aren’t we?

My thoughts on the stadium? They’ve got a field, right? And a fence? So I guess that’s all right.

Um, four-eyed dude in the back…a chance to win? Any team I’m on is gonna have a chance to win. I’ve got pretty bitchin’ stats. I wouldn’t have gotten this contract without ’em.

Joining a contender? I dunno. Were they in the playoffs last year? I was in the other league and don’t really pay attention to the games I’m not in. I know we didn’t make the playoffs even though I had that great salary drive. Shit, it wasn’t my fault they choked.

No, once the season’s over, my job is done. I don’t watch any playoffs or whatever if I’m not playing.

Phone call? From somebody on the team? This team? Nobody actually does that. I have an agent who calls the team to get me the contract. That’s how the other players do it, too, I guess. I don’t know who’s on this team yet anyway.

Um, the blonde on the side…the fans? What about them? I don’t know anything about them. They’re the fans. Am I supposed to know them or something? They have security here, right?

I don’t give a shit if they boo or not. I get paid either way.

Pressure? What pressure? Pressure was those last two months last year when I had to put up the big numbers to get the contract. The money’s guaranteed now. I’ll do my work and take my cuts and whatever happens happens. I’m pretty good, so I guess it’ll take care of itself. And if it doesn’t, the contract’s signed.

Um, a couple more…what? My family? Shit, I don’t know what they think. I’m gonna be making a lot of money and my wife’s probably gonna be on my ass even more than usual. Good thing I’ve got that prenup. She was pretty hot when we met when I was in the minors, but with this contract I can probably do better. It’s not much of a marriage, in case the ladies in this city are listening.

We’ll live wherever. Probably as far from around here as we can judging by what my agent told me. Not too long a drive, I hope. But, you know, away from the city.

The local cultural scene? I’m a ballplayer. My wife’s a ballplayer’s wife. I play ball. She does whatever all day. We’re not gonna be going to any culture. I’ve got a pretty big TV. I’ll probably get a bigger one now.

Endorsements? I hope so. That’s a shitload of money right there. First year for sure. If I’m any good after that, I’ll totally cash in. If not, I’m covered. It’s a pretty kickass contract.

Oh yeah, it has incentive clauses. My agent told me about those. I thought that was pretty funny. And a signing bonus. Man, just for showing up! It’s almost like I don’t have to play or at least I don’t have to play all that good.

We get more if we’re in the World Series, don’t we? Sweet. If you want to call that motivation, you can.

No, I don’t really wear jewelry, so I don’t care about a ring. But I can always use another check.

Oh yeah, my agent wants me to mention my foundation. It’s gonna give me some pretty serious tax breaks, so whatever with that and kids.

Is that it? More pictures now? Do I need to put this stupid jersey back on? This whole thing is kinda gay, but if you say so. The shit I hafta do to make a living.