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A-Rod: I don't want any perks
By Peter Gammons
Special to ESPN.com
Alex Rodriguez wants to make one thing perfectly clear. He doesn't want or need any perks.
"If I'm making $18 million or $23 million or whatever I turn out to get I can buy anything I want," says Rodriguez. "It would be ridiculous to ask for some of the things that I've supposedly been demanding."
A-Rod is upset that Mets GM Steve Phillips went public with things Phillips claimed agent Scott Boras discussed in their meeting. "It's fine if they say they want to spend their money in another way," says Rodriguez. "But I'm not that kind of person. Scott and I met two months ago, and I told him I don't want to get involved in these types of things. We'll negotiate the best money deal, and that's that.
"As far as my supposedly demanding a plane -- I already have a deal with a charter jet company out of Boston as spokesman for their company, so not only do I have one if I need it, which I really don't, but I couldn't have any other deal. I already have an office, and there is a company in Atlanta that handles what I need, so I don't need any staff provided by the club that signs me. What I'm focusing on is a team with a good chance to win, the players, the city, things like that. I'm not a selfish player. I want to be one player on a good team that has a chance to win a ring. That billboard thing? Come on."
Rodriguez was hurt by Phillips' "24-plus-one" comment. "I think my teammates in Seattle would dispute that," he says. The 25-year-old has been paid $1M, $2M, $3M and $4M the last four years, and never complained, instead finishing in the top three in the MVP voting three straight years.
One columnist chastised Boras for not demanding that the club and player jointly invest in a foundation. "That's something I want to explore locally for the city in which I play," says Rodriguez. "But my current foundation is also very important." The Alex Rodriguez foundation to promote literacy in the Miami area this month is opening a $500,000 computer center for public school children.
"When I sign, people will see that there are no big side deals and they may find out that I took a little less to play for the team I want to play with," he says.
"Uh oh," said one baseball executive when informed of Rodriguez's comment. "That sounds a lot like Atlanta."Send this story to a friend | Most sent stories
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