DUNEDIN ó Without giving away his strategy to get Jose Bautista under contract, Alex Anthopoulos revealed a couple of wrinkles that wonít be in the contract, or any contract he negotiates, if he can help it.
One is the so-called performance bonus. The other is the vesting option.
ďIím very reluctant to put performance bonuses into deals strictly because Iíve seen examples where there seems to be manipulation,Ē he said. ďThe manager is given the players and itís his job to set the lineup, to set the playing time. Heís the one running that clubhouse. The player should not feel for one second or have any doubts that thereís orders from above.
ďI always tell an agent if we are talking about performance bonuses that I would rather go higher on the base salary and take out the incentives so the player doesnít have to worry about those things. He can worry about winning.
ďWeíll avoid it whenever we can, not because weíre not willing to pay the player but weíd rather pay a little more money up front to take away any possible controversy or feeling of ill-will that might affect the managerís ability to run the team.Ē
Vesting options are clauses that are validated by the player reaching certain playing milestones, such as plate appearances or innings pitched.
ďI donít believe in those,Ē Anthopoulos said. ďI donít want to give anybody a reason to think a player is not playing for any other reason than itís the managerís decision. I donít want even a 1% chance for them to believe itís because of another impact. Whether itís the front office, whether itís money. Itís happened. Iíve seen it across the game for years and Iíve seen it impact clubhouses. Iíve seen it impact a playerís view of the organization. Itís not part of our brand.Ē
- Ken Fidlin