‘Happy Bobby Vonia Day!
In the United States, media outlets are calling July 1 (local time) “Bobby Bonnia Day” for the former Major League Baseball slugger. It’s a day of shame for our club, the New York Mets. We’d like to hide it, but we won’t be able to until 2035.
On this day, not only ESPN, but Fox Sports and San Diego Padres broadcaster Valisports previewed the game against the Cincinnati Reds as Bonnie Bonnia Day.
Mets owner Steve Cohen even tweeted “I hope everybody is enjoying my favorite day of the year, Bobby Bonilla Day. It’s an ironic tweet.
It’s a contract that has gone down in Major League Baseball history as a signing gone wrong.
The contract was not signed by current owner Cohen. It was signed by his predecessor, Fred Wilpon, who inherited the financial burden and will pay Bonilla $1.238 million and 20 cents every July 1 until 2035.
Bonilla is now 60 years old. He has just five more years to collect his pension from Major League Baseball. However, he has been receiving more than the MLB pension since 2011. He made his debut in 1986 and retired from active play in 2001 with the St. Louis Cardinals.
In 1999, the Mets cut a number of players who were declining and aging. Bonilla was one of them, but he had $5.9 million left on his contract. The club had a buyout on that salary, but later signed him to a new contract in installments with statutory interest. It’s for 25 years, from 2011 to 2035. According to ESPN, the statutory interest and installments totaled $30 million. The remaining $5.9 million snowballed. Bonilla’s agent at the time was Dennis Gilbert, ’76. To this day, he is often seen near the backstop at Dodger games.먹튀검증
The Mets’ later offer reflected the situation at the time. They used the remaining $5.9 million to invest in securities and fund an annuity, accumulating annual dividends. The idea was that investors would receive the dividends at a high rate of interest, and the Mets would benefit by millions of dollars by siphoning off Bonilla’s salary.
But then there was an unexpected twist. In 2009, an event rocked the United States and the world. He invested in Ponzi schemer Buddy Madoff. Medoff was sentenced to 150 years in prison and died in 2021.
At the time, Madoff’s Ponzi scheme caught not only institutions but also retail investors, especially Jews. Wilpon is Jewish. The Mets were hit hard by the Madoff scam. Wilpon was under severe financial pressure until he sold the team to Cohen in 2020.
While Bonilla is known for his pensionable salary, which will be paid on July 1, he was also good at baseball during his career. He finished his career with a .279 batting average, 287 home runs, and 1173 RBIs. He was a power hitter who formed a BB lineup with Barry Bonds during his time with the Pittsburgh Pirates.