Clemens will come back - with record salary for pitcher

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    Clemens will come back - with!record salary for pitcher


    Clemens will come back - with record salary for pitcher



    By JOEL ANDERSON
    AP SPORTS WRITER

    HOUSTON - Roger Clemens is coming back for one more year - and is getting the highest salary for a pitcher in baseball history. The Rocket and the Houston Astros agreed Friday to an $18 million, one-year contract, and the seven-time Cy Young Award winner made the commitment to play for his 22nd major league season.

    "I'm ready for the challenge. Here we go again," Clemens said.

    Clemens, whose salary tops the $17.5 million Pedro Martinez earned with Boston last year in the option year of his contract, first retired after pitching for the New York Yankees in the 2003 World Series. But he changed his mind and agreed on Jan. 12 last year to join his hometown Astros, accepting a $5 million, one-year deal that was way below his market price.

    The 42-year-old right-hander helped lead the Astros within one win of their first World Series appearance, earning $1,825,000 in bonuses based largely on Houston's home attendance, then said again that he was "99 percent" retired.

    But momentum built after he returned earlier this month from a Hawaiian vacation, and he asked for $22 million salary - matching his uniform number - when proposed figures for salary arbitration were filed Tuesday. Houston offered $13.5 million, leaving the midpoint at $17.75 million.

    "I kind of sat back and laughed at the numbers," he said.

    His agents, Randy and Alan Hendricks, then negotiated the deal with the Astros on Wednesday and Thursday.

    "This came on so fast last night," Clemens said, adding that he would start two-a-day workouts in the next few days. "I'm going to have to get ready to play again."

    "I thank my family. Last night there were some smiles, there were some tears," Clemens added, saying that sons Koby and Kory helped talk him into playing again.

    "Just remember what it sounded like here, dad, when you took the mound," Clemens said they told him Thursday.

    Clemens is agreeing to a contract that makes him the highest-paid pitcher for the fifth time, following deals with Boston in 1989 ($2.5 million average), with the Red Sox in 1991 ($5.38 million), with Toronto in December 1996 ($8.25 million) and with the Yankees in August 2000 ($15.45 million). The two contracts with Boston and the one with New York made him the sport's highest-paid player overall.

    Clemens also is getting the highest, one-year contract in baseball history, topping Greg Maddux's $14.75 million deal with Atlanta in 2003.

    His decision to stay is one of the few bright spots in an otherwise miserable offseason for the Astros. All-Star second baseman Jeff Kent left to sign with Los Angeles, All-Star center fielder Carlos Beltran departed to sign with the New York Mets, center fielder Lance Berkman tore up a knee playing flag football at a church function and promising but injured pitcher Wade Miller was let go.

    "You lose a lot of power, a lot of numbers," Clemens said, "but again, it's time for some people to step up."

    Clemens, a 10-time All-Star, is 10th on the career wins list with 328, one behind Steve Carlton. Clemens' 4,317 strikeouts are second to Nolan Ryan's 5,714.

    His decision to sign with Houston last year was spurred by former Yankees teammate Andy Pettitte, who left New York to sign with the Astros. Clemens went 18-4 with a 2.98 ERA and 218 strikeouts, winning his first Cy Young in the NL, but Pettitte hurt an elbow tendon while batting in his first start, was largely ineffective and had season-ending surgery in August. "Really, we didn't have the opportunity to perform together," said Clemens, who spoke with Pettitte on Friday. At $18 million, Clemens tied Sammy Sosa and Barry Bonds for the fourth-highest average salary in the major leagues, trailing only Alex Rodriguez ($25.2 million), Manny Ramirez ($20 million) and Derek Jeter ($18.9 million).


    Comments: Money aside, I am still envious. I do not recall my children ever saying anything remotely similar to me in regard to motivating me to drag my old ass to work every day. Kind of cool. Maybe it's just me.

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    That's just out of control. They can throw down this much money for a 42 year old pitcher, but not a great player like Beltran. ****ing idiots. Say bye-bye to the GM after this season.
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    Quote Originally Posted by natedogg
    They can throw down this much money for a 42 year old pitcher, but not a great player like Beltran. ****ing idiots.
    Hold on a second. "Clemens went 18-4 with a 2.98 ERA and 218 strikeouts, winning his first Cy Young in the NL". And those were just last years numbers and the Cy Young he won. So he is disqualified from being great due to the fact that he is 42. He has a long history of being great. Beltran is a rookie with one excellent post season performance. NOT in the same league or even the same ballpark.
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    They had to sign the rocket for 3 reasons

    1. The free agent market is very dry and they weren't able to deal for Mulder or Hudson
    2. They lost Jeff Kent and Carlos Beltran so they had to show their fans that they won't give up.
    3. He's still a damm great pitcher.
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    Quote Originally Posted by b5150
    Hold on a second. "Clemens went 18-4 with a 2.98 ERA and 218 strikeouts, winning his first Cy Young in the NL". And those were just last years numbers and the Cy Young he won. So he is disqualified from being great due to the fact that he is 42. He has a long history of being great. Beltran is a rookie with one excellent post season performance. NOT in the same league or even the same ballpark.
    Yes he is a great pitcher, but he's 42! This WILL be his last year. Sorry, but they just don't have the formula to win big. Losing key players like Beltran, Kent, and Alou hurt. Bagwell and Biggio are down to their final years. Who else do they have. Berkman can hit for power and average. Pettite is alright when he's not hurt. Oswalt has potential to be a 20 game winner. That's about it. I'm telling you, last year was the year to go all the way and they blew it. You also forgot that Beltran came up with the Royals (in fact he's been a pro since 1998 and he's still only 27 years old). He can hit for power, he's a threat to steal and he can field pretty good too. He's what you call a complete player. Although I do think the Mets grossly overpaid for him. Anyways, I'm not saying he's a bad player. Actually he's one of the greatest pitchers of our time. I just think the Astros could have done a few things differently.
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    Quote Originally Posted by natedogg
    He's what you call a complete player. Although I do think the Mets grossly overpaid for him. Anyways, I'm not saying he's a bad player. Actually he's one of the greatest pitchers of our time. I just think the Astros could have done a few things differently.
    Beltran is very good. But I believe he and the Mets are why he is not an Astro. He wanted to go large and the Mets did.

    And what is too funny now...Delgado wants more money...whaaaa, whaaaa, whaaaa
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    he asked for $22 million salary - matching his uniform number - when proposed figures for salary arbitration were filed Tuesday. Houston offered $13.5 million, leaving the midpoint at $17.75 million.

    "I kind of sat back and laughed at the numbers," he said.
    Im sorry...I mean he's probably made over 100 million dollars. I mean can you even fathom how much money that is?! And he has the audacity to laugh at $13 million offer while the people in the stands might be making $30,000 per year? I mean seriously, when you have that much money, what difference is + or - 4 million going to make? IMO, nothing except for one's pride and ego.

    Sorry for the rant, but these contracts are just getting put of hand.
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    Can't say I disagree with the insane salaries. Unfortunately baseball (athletes) are not really paid by what the worth of their athletic ability is. They want a share of the revenue that their presence or performance there produces. They fill seats for businessmen who make money and they want their cut. I know I would not work more than one year at a $1M salary at something I rather not be doing (what I have been doing for way too long). I'd likely not feel the same about it if I was a mega-million $$ athlete who just does what he enjoys doing and is good at. I likely would keep doing it and make as much as they are willing to give me. Hopefully I would be a good steward with the excess...cause after the first year it is all excess.
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    Quote Originally Posted by custom
    Im sorry...I mean he's probably made over 100 million dollars. I mean can you even fathom how much money that is?! And he has the audacity to laugh at $13 million offer while the people in the stands might be making $30,000 per year? I mean seriously, when you have that much money, what difference is + or - 4 million going to make? IMO, nothing except for one's pride and ego.

    Sorry for the rant, but these contracts are just getting put of hand.
    It's looks to me that he cares more about the money than he does winning another championship. If he wanted to win another championship, he could have taken a paycut that could have been used on the free agent market. I figured he wanted a "little" more money to retire with you know. Can you blame him. He has his Cy Young awards and his championship rings. Him and his kids are set for life now.
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    Quote Originally Posted by custom
    Im sorry...I mean he's probably made over 100 million dollars. I mean can you even fathom how much money that is?! And he has the audacity to laugh at $13 million offer while the people in the stands might be making $30,000 per year? I mean seriously, when you have that much money, what difference is + or - 4 million going to make? IMO, nothing except for one's pride and ego.

    Sorry for the rant, but these contracts are just getting put of hand.
    That pisses the hell out of me when I hear that too. I'd be the happiest man on earth if someone offered me $13 million for one freaking year. I'm not saying these guys should play for an average man's salary but why bitch and moan about 2-3 million when you are already living like a king
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    The rocket will win at least 15 next year.
    My Little Site about Hair Loss & Anabolics-
    hair loss from steroids dot com
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    And now he is rumored to be going to the Yankees in a trade.
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    Quote Originally Posted by asap nutrition
    And now he is rumored to be going to the Yankees in a trade.
    link?
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    Quote Originally Posted by B5150
    link?
    That is why I said it is rumored. I heard it on JT the Brick show on Fox sports Radio about 8 days ago. Just speculation right now.
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