Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Mike Lowell's still a Sox

Finally, a major league ballplayer who isn't greedy and goes for the most money, although $37 million for three years is a pretty big chunk of change.

Mike Lowell re-signed with the Sox, turning down an estimated $50 million over four years with the Phillies. He said he considers himself more of a baseball player than a businessperson. He likes playing baseball in Boston. His wife likes Boston. He likes the Red Sox organization.

Good for him. Major league sports is just that: a business. And the players are entertainers just like Madonna, who just signed a contract with Live Nation that includes all aspects of her business including t-shirt sales. I can't imagine that even Madonna, when she was younger and thinking up songs in her head, considered t-shirt sales in the mix.

Forgetting the core reason they do what they do is what businesses all over the world do, concentrating on the bottom line rather than the art or the sport or whatever it is they do. And the almighty dollar just sullies the reason we all got into whatever it is we do, so we chase the dollar. Health care is no longer about healing, but it's about running a profitable hospital. Baseball players forget about the joy and grace and beauty of turning a double play or lacing a hit into right and instead consider endorsements.

$37 million more than enough for anyone, and I honestly believe people can have too much money. It changes them, mostly for the worst. $37 million is probably the GNP for a lot of small countries. It's an amount of money that most of us can't even comprehend, and it's nice to see that Lowell can keep his sights on his values, just like he can keep his eye on the ball on the playing field.

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