Mark Teixeira to MLB Players Union: Take the Deal

John Healy
May 12, 2020 - 4:56 pm
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Mark Teixeira does not think the players union should squabble any further with the owners.

Take the deal, is his advice.

The former Yankees first baseman went on ESPN Tuesday and advocated that the union accept the proposal that the owners approved for the 2020 regular season, which is being scrutinized by the players due to concerns over money, as well as the public health and safety risks.

“Players need to understand that if they turn this deal down and shut the sport down, they’re not making a cent,” Teixeira said. “I would rather make pennies on the dollar and give hope to people and play baseball than not make anything and lose an entire year off their career.”

The owners and union agreed in March that the players would be paid a prorated salary for 2020, but in the new proposal, the owners are asking to split 2020 revenues with the players, which would likely mean a further reduction in salary.

MLBPA chief Tony Clark blasted the proposal in an interview with The Athletic, and accused the owners of trying to take advantage a pandemic to institute a salary cap.

Teixeira, who retired in 2016, made more than $200 million in his career -- which included a $180 million contract he inked with the Bombers in 2009. He said he understood Clark’s position, but added this is an unprecedented challenge.

“Every other year I would stand together and say the owners aren’t going to do this to us, and we’re going to get paid our full fare, if I’m going to put myself out there I’m going to get paid a full day’s wage,” he said. “The problem is you have people all over the world taking pay cuts, losing their jobs, losing their lives. Frontline workers putting their lives at risk. These are unprecedented times.

“This is the one time I would advocate for the players accepting a deal like this. A 50-50 split in revenues is not that crazy. If you really think about it and boil it down to what the players usually get from a revenue standpoint, it’s actually lower than 50 percent of the baseball revenue for a full season. So, if I’m a player, I don’t like it. But I’m going to do whatever I have to do to play and that means taking this deal.”