NEW YORK — While the rest of the baseball world loves making fun of the Mets every July 1 for paying their annual deferment payment to disappointing 1990s big splash free agent slugger Bobby Bonilla, the new boss of the club doesn’t seem to care.
Team owner Steve Cohen took to Twitter to make light of the situation by wishing Mets fans a happy “Bobby Bonilla Day.”
“I hope everybody is enjoying my favorite day of the year , Bobby Bonilla Day,” tweeted Cohen.
Bonilla will be making $1.2 million every year on the first of July from 2011 to 2035. This payment plan was initially setup by the previous ownership group, the Wilpon family.
Deferred payments are also very common in baseball, with Manny Ramirez (16-year, $32 million payment plan with Boston Red Sox) and Ken Griffey Jr. (paid $3.9 million annually through 2024 by Cincinnati Reds).
Current Mets co-ace Max Scherzer will receive $105 million ($15 million annually) from the Washington Nationals through 2028.
Alas, Cohen, whose worth $15 billion, isn’t phased by these annual deferment payments. Instead, he has the sense of humor and financial flexibility to be able to joke about it.
The Mets made Bonilla the highest-paid player in the National League by signing him to a five-year, $29 million deal ahead of the 1992 season. He went onto make the All-Star Game in 1993 and 1995, but the Mets never lived up to expectations as a team after signing Bonilla to be their big star. New York traded him to the Baltimore Orioles at the 1995 deadline. He returned in 1999, but struggled immensely.