Odd situation this week: Marlins fans, and South Florida in general, celebrating something that is inherently depressing.
I don’t mean that Giancarlo Stanton’s contract extension is depressing. The idea Miami will be cheering baseball’s premier young home-run hitter at least the next six seasons and as many as the next 13 years is exciting. All good.
What’s depressing is the idea any athlete is making the money Stanton is now due. It’s unfathomable. Obscene. Beyond ridiculous.
A 13-year, $325million contract means Stanton will “earn” $68,493 per day, year round, before taxes. That’s $2,854 per hour, nonstop, around the clock. That’s $48 a minute.
In the time it took you to read the preceding few paragraphs, I think Stanton just made enough money to buy the Bahamas.
Stanton’s deal breaks down to about $167,000 per game (based on 150 games per season), and roughly $50,000 per at-bat (based on 500 at-bats per year).
He celebrated his mega-deal in appropriate style, partying at FDR nightclub at Miami’s Delano hotel, sipping from a 6-liter bottle of champagne. It was rare Moet Nectar Imperial Rosé Leopard Luxury Edition Methuselah. The bottle was coated in 22-carat golf leaf. It cost $20,000.
The only negative here is increased expectations and pressure.
The Marlins open major-league spring training March5 in Jupiter, and Stanton had better start earning his money fast. He’d better hit a tape-measure home run in his first at-bat in the first inning — and it had better be a grand slam, even though he bats third — or somebody will start an “Over-rated!” chant.
▪ I’d like to wish you all an early happy Thanksgiving. It’s the holiday where we pause to give thanks for the things that really matter in life, after which we careen to Walmart at 3a.m. and aggressively bull-rush rival shoppers for Black Friday savings.
▪ What a bizarre oddity in the NFL this week. I don’t mean that severe snowstorms diverted a Buffalo home game to Detroit. I mean that the Oakland Raiders won a game!
▪ Adrian Peterson’s suspension was extended at least through the season, further indication that NFL commissioner Roger Goodell seems to be making all this up as he goes along.
▪ The UM men’s basketball team started the season 3-0 with a stunning upset at No.8 Florida, led by Angel Rodriguez, a transfer from Kansas State. I call dibs on referring to Rodriguez as Jim Larrañaga’s “heaven-sent Angel.”
▪ I read ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit thinks the world of UM quarterback Brad Kaaya and coach Al Golden. I politely nodded and played along with the premise anybody cares what he thinks.
▪ Will Muschamp, Dead Man Coaching, continues to lead the Gators after “resigning” last week. Yeah, he resigned all right. Sort of like it was Richard Nixon’s idea to leave the White House early.
▪ Admit it. Raise your hand if you thought this whole new College Football Playoff ranking thing was working out great until the moment the guy at the top of the pile was Nick Saban.
▪ FSU climbed back to No.1 in The Associated Press poll. Dear AP: Sorry, but since the advent of the College Football Playoff ranking, your poll is about as relevant as a manual typewriter.
▪ The Panthers had won two of three on the road and begun to find the net entering Saturday’s game, including a very impressive 6-2 win at Anaheim. Last week I said let’s raise the bar on “upswing.” OK, that’s an upswing.
▪ The DEA surprise-searched three NFL teams’ medical staffs (49ers, Seahawks, Bucs) for illegal painkillers. That sound you heard was 29 other teams’ medical staffs exhaling relief.
▪ You hear about the Saints fan, Tony Williams, who snatched a football that had been tossed to a female Bengals fan? I propose that Williams and Steve Bartman get together and form a Villain Fans Club.
▪ The Fort Lauderdale Strikers lost to San Antonio for the 2014 NASL championship. The Strikers also lost the 1980 Soccer Bowl in the league’s original incarnation. See you in 2048!
▪ Remember, be careful not to exert yourself, Derrick Rose. We sure wouldn’t want you to be sore later in life.
▪ In hockey, Columbus defenseman Jack Johnson filed for bankruptcy after signing a $30.5million contract in 2011, blaming lavish spending by his mother, whom he’d given power of attorney. Rule of thumb: “Love you, Ma, but I think I’ll get a professional financial planner.”
▪ Manny Pacquiao insists he wants to fight Floyd Mayweather Jr. What year is this? How long have we heard that? Maybe the two will end up fighting in a nursing home over the last cup of Jell-O.
▪ A fishing team from Broward won the Wahoo Smackdown in the Bahamas. I wonder of the Wahoo was covered by Yahoo!.
▪ Parting thought: Jose Canseco accidentally shot himself in the finger, then said the digit fell off at poker table and that he would sell the finger on eBay. He later admitted the finger falling off was a hoax. Or, did that go without saying?
Visit Greg’s Random Evidence of a Cluttered Blog daily at MiamiHerald.com and follow on Twitter @gregcote and also on Facebook, Instagram and Vine.
Today: Dolphins vs. Peyton Manning. Miami has held Manning to a lower passer rating (79.8) than any other NFL team. His key career numbers against teams he has faced at least 10 times, ranked by lowest rating:
What South Florida sports fans are talking about:
Club makes official Stanton’s record deal: How strange that, in the heart of a Dolphins playoff run and with the Heat under way, South Florida was talking Marlins this week in the dead of baseball’s offseason. Even stranger: We weren’t bemoaning the latest fire sale. Thanks to Giancarlo Stanton’s contract extension, we were talking Marlins for the right reasons.
Playoff-chasing Fins visit Denver, Manning: Miami enters Week 12 positioned seventh in the jockeying for six AFC playoff spots, and Dolfans are torn. They are optimistic the Fins can turn Peyton Manning mortal just like the Rams did last week. But an impolite little voice keeps whispering, “What are the odds the Denver Broncos lose two games in a row?”
UM tries to rebound from tough loss to FSU: Canes played at Virginia on Saturday night trying to forget their blown-lead, 30-26 home loss to Florida State. Duke Johnson was going after the school’s career rushing record as UM jockeyed for bowl position. You know it hasn’t been a great year when looming destinations include the Sun Bowl in El Paso, Texas.
Team, sans injured Wade, fights early slump: The bad news? The Heat had lost four of its past five games and was 6-6 entering Saturday, with Dwyane Wade missing four games in a row with a hamstring issue. The good news? Miami would be the current No.5 playoff seed in the NBA’s weak Eastern Conference, where mediocrity evidently finds a welcoming home.
Harvick reigns, but sport lucks out at Homestead: Kevin Harvick won last week’s year-ending race at Homestead-Miami Speedway and also the season title, and fans could agree he was worthy. The sport dodged a bullet with its new Chase for the Cup format, though, as two drivers with zero wins or one made the final four. Tweak on, NASCAR. Tweak on!