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res a little adversity.BIG PICT

  • 05 May
    Its?Friday, July 1, and we should be thinking about our Fourth of July weekend plans. But as baseball fans, we cant. Why? Because today is all about Bobby Bonilla.A man who last played 5,381 days ago owns this day. Not just this?July 1, but every?July 1?through 2035. Its the day when the?New York Mets pay him $1,193,248.20.So with the water cooler and Twitter buzzing about the Bonilla deal, heres your primer.How did the deal present itself?Deferred-money deals have been going on for a long time, but the Mets did more of them than most. The first deferred-money deal we know about is Darryl Strawberrys 1985 contract, in which the Mets deferred 40 percent of his 1990 $1.8 million team option ($700,000) at a 5.1 percent interest rate. The deal, which pays out $1.64 million from 2004 to 2033, was obtained through a life insurance company.Bonillas agent, Dennis Gilbert, was an insurance agent at the same time he developed into a superagent (Gilberts clients included Bonilla, Barry Bonds, Jose Canseco and Danny Tartabull), so he was more uniquely prepared to understand annuity-type payouts than other agents.How does the deal actually work?The Mets owed Bonilla $5.9 million for the 2000 season and no longer wanted him. So the club negotiated with Gilbert to attach an 8 percent annual interest rate to that money. With the clock starting in 2000, that adds up to $29.8 million. The first installment of the payout came on July 1, 2011, and the Mets will pay their sixth installment on Friday.Why did the Mets do the deal?The Mets have never really talked about the deal, but it is well known that their owners, the Wilpons, had many accounts with investor Bernie Madoff. Madoff was returning 12 to 15 percent a year in what we now know were fictional returns. So deferring deals wasnt a problem because the payout would occur years later and the interest rate would be lower than the money they were (fictionally) getting back from Madoff. To see the deal as the Mets would have seen it, lets say the Wilpons put $5.9 million into a Madoff account in 2000 and got a conservative (by Madoff standards) 10 percent annual return. By 2011, when they would have to pay Bonilla for the first time, they would have already grown their pot to $16.83 million. Even with paying off Bonilla every year, they would wind up with a $49 million profit on the deal. Of course, the Madoff returns werent real, which complicates this hindsight.The other way to think of it is that the Mets didnt have to pay Bonilla his $5.9 million in 2000 and could use it on other free agents. Sure enough, the Mets acquired Mike Hampton from the Astros right before they dumped Bonilla. Hamptons cost was conveniently $5.75 million, and his 15-10 record was good enough to help get the Mets to the World Series that year for the first time since 1986.It seems like everyone thinks Bonilla got a great deal by turning $5.9 million into $29.8 million -- did he?The deal is great from a gross money perspective. If you take out the 2000 season -- where the deferred money comes from -- Bonillas career earnings are $46.45 million, so the $29.8 million looms large. Also understand that because he didnt have to earn the money in 2000 and collects years later instead, he isnt paying New York income tax (he lives in Florida, a state with no income tax), nor the so-called jock taxes for earning money on the road in states that do have income tax.But you also have to account for what Bonilla could have done with the money if he did get that $5.9 million in 2000. We did the math by using a conservative strategy of putting that $5.9 million into the market in January 2000, when this deal was struck. We put 60 percent of the money in stocks and 40 percent in bonds and rebalanced the portfolio to those percentages at the start of each year following our gains in each area. Going back historically, we learn that Bonilla would have aggregated $16.5 million by December 2015. Through the deal the Mets gave him, he collected only $5.9 million by December 2015.Looking at it that way, it doesnt look like Bonilla got the steal of the century. But what happens if you assume that Bonilla needs to live off that money starting in the year the deferred money pays out? You put that $5.9 million into the stock and bond market with the same percentages and you withdraw six times. (His first withdrawal would come in 2010 to prepare for 2011.) If you do that, youre left with $7.35 million to reinvest starting in 2016, having taken out $1.19 million six times. This is where you start to stall. You have to make that $7.35 million work for you to get 19 more payments, and youre staring at a market where bonds are generating only 2 percent yields and the stock market isnt so hot. Its nearly impossible to think that you can do that. So in that scenario, Bonilla is better from a financial-planning perspective having accepted the deal from the Mets.So why do the Mets get made fun of for making this deal?This is a complex question. It starts with the fact that Bonilla was a disappointment for the team. In his second stint with the Mets, he was on the disabled list frequently, and when he was playing, he wasnt any good.Its also funny that, as a 53-year-old this year, he is still on the Mets payroll. But I believe that much of why so many people make a big deal about this is because of how cheap the Mets pitching staff is. So much of why Bobby Bonilla trends on Twitter every?July 1?has to do with the fact that he still makes more than most of the teams great young pitchers -- Jacob DeGrom, Noah Syndergaard and Steven Matz all make less than $610,000 per year.Theres also the Madoff part, which leaves the Mets open to ridicule. Of course many Mets fans who make fun of the deal dont follow it through completely. Hampton was with the Mets for one year, but when he went to the Rockies in 2001, the Mets got the 38th pick in the draft, which they used to pick ...?David Wright!What other fun deferred money deals are out there?Aside from paying Bonilla through 2035, the Mets are paying Bret Saberhagen, who was also represented by Gilbert, $250,000 per year through 2029. The Diamondbacks will be paying Bernard Gilkey, who retired in 2001, his last payment next year. Why? Gilkey signed a four-year contract with the Mets from 1997 to 2000. The deal deferred $2.5 million from his 1999 salary and $2.5 million from his 2000 salary, which turned into a $9 million annuity. But the Diamondbacks took on that contract in August 1998.And now get ready for the real kicker. Gilbert recently sat down with ESPN for a new digital series for?FiveThirtyEight, Contracts, debuting later this summer. He said that?Bonilla actually has another deferred deal with the Mets that makes another $12.5 million. It was part of his first deal with the team that ran from 1992 to 1996. The $29 million deal made Bonilla the highest-salaried player in baseball at the time. Part of the deal was to defer some money, which resulted in Bonilla getting $500,000 a year from 2004 through 2023. The Mets shipped Bonilla to the Orioles for the last season and a half of that deal, so they split the fare with Baltimore. Stitched Soccer Jerseys Sale . MORITZ, Switzerland -- Fog prevented downhill racers from getting their Olympic dress rehearsal. 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SALT LAKE CITY -- Chris Holtmann knew he had learned a lot about his Butler team during a week-long, three game road trip -- for better or worse. The ride back to Indianapolis will be a pleasant one for the third-year coach after a clean sweep.Kelan Martin scored 18 points as No. 18 Butler remained undefeated with a 68-59 victory over Utah on Monday night. The loss was the first of the season for the Utes.Its been a long week, but a full week and a really good week, Holtmann said. Id have had a different look on my face if we had been 0-3 on this stretch, but either way we were going to learn a lot of stuff.The experience of playing on (at Utah) and in a road environment and what comes out of that that you learn -- moving on to the next possession and playing with poise under duress. Those were the things we were going to hope came out of it, and it did.Butler controlled the game from the opening tip and trailed just once at 20-19. The Bulldogs responded to that with a 14-3 run to take a 10-point lead.A 13-4 run early in the second half, highlighted by a deep 3-pointer from Tyler Lewis, put Utah away. Butler did what its done all season -- shoot well from the field, play stingy defense and limit turnovers. The Bulldogs shot 52.8 percent and held the Utes to 36.5 percent.Tyler Wideman chipped in 15 points for Butler, which moved into the Top 25 earlier Monday.Kyle Kuzma led Utah with 21 points and 10 rebounds while Lorenzo Bonam finished with 17 points.Butler took a 33-27 lead into halftime after a clunky first half in which both teams struggled in its own way. The Bulldogs were efficient from the field, shooting 56.0 percent, and played stout defense. That defense, however, fouled so often Utah was able to remain in the game.The Utes missed open shots, layups and turned over the ball repeatedly. They shot just 30.8 percent in the first half, including 2 for 13 from behind the arc, but outrebounded the Bulldogs by nine and hit eight more free throws. That balanced the 10 turnovers and the 17 points Butler scored off them.I dont think Ive been involved with a college basketball game (before now) where the other team scored 23 points off our turnovers.dddddddddddd Its damn near impossible to do, Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak said. You cant defend turnovers and we basically turned it over to the point where they scored right away.This was the first test for us, really, if you look at our schedule. The timing was about right after a handful of games and we didnt do a good job with the test. But we cant learn unless were put in a position where theres a little adversity.BIG PICTUREButler: The Bulldogs are rolling after a road trip that included wins over Utah, No. 16 Arizona and Vanderbilt. Butler has a strong chance of an 11-0 start heading into the Crossroads Classic against No. 13 Indiana.UTAH: The Utes were tested for the first time after beginning the season against two Division II teams and two lower non-Power 5 teams. The team clearly awaits the availability of point guard Sedrick Barefield and power forward David Collette, who will be eligible against Prairie View A&M on Dec. 17 after transferring in last year.POLL IMPLICATIONSButler just entered the Top 25 this week and dont look to be going anywhere soon. Monday should be considered the fourth quality win of the season and with just a home game against Central Arkansas remaining this week, the Bulldogs are unlikely to drop.ALMOST THEREKrystkowiak remains at 99 wins wearing the red and white. He currently sits at 99-74 in his sixth season. Krystkowiak had a 42-20 record in two seasons at Montana from 2004-06.QUOTABLEHonestly, I dont think they did a lot, Kuzma said. Im not saying that just because we lost. A lot of credit to them. We had a lot of blatant turnovers that we shouldnt have had and that affected a lot of things we did today.UP NEXTButler: The Bulldogs return from a three-game road trip to host Central Arkansas on Saturday.Utah: The Utes host Montana State on Thursday in their sixth straight home game to open the season.---More AP college basketball: and ' ' '