Some people make mega-donations for schools, hospitals, museums and theaters. Those are community treasures that contribute to the thing we like to call “quality of life” in Minnesota.
So maybe I am suggesting to Carl Pohlad how to spend some of his money, but I think it’s time to him to call Bill Smith and call off the Santana trade talks.
When Smith asks why, I suggest that Pohlad respond as follows (He can even read straight from this script): “Johan Santana is a community treasure. I will pay $150 million to extend his contract for the next six years. I do not see this as a precedent-setter in that I can’t imagine Bonser or Baker or even that Juan Rincon coming to you down the road and demanding what will surely become known as ‘Johan Money.’
“I do, however, want to do something to recognize the goodwill that has been shown by those who have made the new ballpark possible, the people who have supported us through the good times and the times when we tried to fool them into thinking that Sidney Ponson and Tony Batista could help.
“Johan Santana is a community asset, a treasure that we in Minnesota discovered and nurtured and brought to full force as the premier pitcher of the Third Millenium. For him to go to New York or Boston or anywhere else would simply be wrong.
“I know that I could have financed a retractable roof for the new ballpark, and I didn’t. Instead, I will pay for Johan Santana to finish his career in Minnesota. He is an ambassador of baseball, and he should be our ambassador. He should also kick C.C. Sabathia’s butt when we play Cleveland next season. Again and again.
“Halt the trade talks, Mr. Smith. I will sign Johan. That will be part of my legacy. Now take the money you saved on Torii and go find a center fielder. That will be the beginning of your’s.”