Delgado, Sexson

DMZ · December 2, 2004 at 6:21 am · Filed Under Mariners 

David Andriesen of the PI writes about the team’s free agent pursuits, and it’s reassuring:

The two top-tier free agents are Carlos Delgado and Richie Sexson, and the Mariners are thought to be after both. Contrary to recent reports, however, the twin pursuits are about keeping options open and will almost certainly not lead to acquiring both players.

“Recent reports” being the Seattle Times, mostly. Anyway, yay!

One possible hitch for the public relations-minded Mariners is Delgado’s quiet refusal to stand for the national anthem, a conviction that has rubbed many wrong.

This is not true. Delgado, when it’s possible, doesn’t stand and take his hat off for “God Bless America” which, as you probably know by now, I detest hearing at baseball games (I’ll spare you that argument for now). He avoids being on the field when it’s sung if he can, so as to not make it an issue.

To quote the Balitmore Sun, for one:

Delgado isn’t sitting out the national anthem. He’s sitting out a song that is played in some ballparks during the seventh-inning stretch at the direction of baseball commissioner Bud Selig.

Other articles that talk about this are available all over the place. Newsday. I’d cite the New York Times (July 21, 2004) on this, but you have to buy the article and… no. But here:

Last March when the United States invaded Iraq, Delgado, in his own quiet way, said that for him, enough was enough. He had stood for “God Bless America” through the 2003 season but vowed not to do so this season.”

This should not be a big deal. It’s not the national anthem. And even if it was… so what? If Seattle can’t accept a good guy who is anti-war, I’m going to be even more disappointed in humanity than normal.


76 Responses to “Delgado, Sexson”

  1. Red State Fan on December 2nd, 2004 4:08 pm

    Fortunately, I live in the great red state of Texas where they appreciate the freedoms granted by “our creator” (a nation-state does not give freedoms, they can only restrict or take them away). I think it is foolish that many of you on this thread take for granted what us as Americans are born into or have come to this country to enjoy. Just because we may have a difference of opinion on whether or not going to war was right nor wrong, does not mean that you should trash your country, and call it evil, etc. If you feel so strongly about hating our nation and its patriotism…or as you put it jingoism, I would suggest going to that country about 150 miles north of Seattle. It is hard to believe that “enlightened, politically correct, and tolerant” people of the Northwest could be so hateful and disrespectful. Harping back on a previous thread, what other nation could give Mr. Delgado the opportunity to make millions of dollars playing baseball? I think I would show a little respect to the one and only nation where that dream could come true. And by the way…the Mariners are a private company in which they can do whatever they want. They are not under the thumb of the government’s so-called “separation of church and state” (which is nonexistent if anyone cared to look it up in the constitution). If they wanted to play a video of the dalai lama up on the screen giving words of advice, they would be more than able to do so. Although, I would bet that all you blue staters would be complaining about that then as well. Good day.

  2. chris w on December 2nd, 2004 4:11 pm

    Regarding GBA… Whether it’s Christian or Jewish or whatever, it doesn’t matter – God Bless America is, in title and lyrics, a religous song that has nothing to do with baseball. It shouldn’t be played. Between the National Anthem and Take Me Out to the Ballgame, you’ve got plenty of singing covering all the requisite subjects.

    Regarding Delgado’s political views… Whether or not they’re relevant and to whom, baseball has a long history of being less than accepting of diverse views. In particular, as I understand it, anti-war baseball players in the 60s and 70s were persecuted if they were outspoken. This smells like that, and it stinks.

  3. DMZ on December 2nd, 2004 4:16 pm

    This whole red/state blue thing is entirely false and if we could, please, knock off calling each other names, that’d be nice. Don’t make me shut down two threads in a day.

  4. ATK1984 on December 2nd, 2004 5:07 pm

    Hey, you know what, I didn’t care for the fact that you eliminated my comments earlier in regards to Jason Giambi using steroids; however, I believe that this post — if it continues to get overpolitical — probably ought to be halted, for it is not a discussion about baseball, but rather politics, which is unecessary.

  5. DMZ on December 2nd, 2004 5:15 pm

    Thank you for your input.

  6. moira on December 2nd, 2004 8:02 pm

    Please please can we talk about baseball again!! Anyhow, Jon makes an excellent point (commment 34)when he says that the M’s have managed to deflect attention from the possibility of Beltran/Beltre. What’s the consensus, are we giving up on that now? For a while I was thinking the M’s might be ready to give that a shot, but I’ve been hearing less and less optimism on that point in recent days. I’m not as anti-Delgado as I once was (and before anyone says anything it’s because I think he’s getting old, not for any political reason at all) but if that’s the big exciting deal we’ve been waiting for in this off-season I’m going to be very disappointed.

  7. Alex on December 2nd, 2004 8:37 pm

    Yes, once again the M’s are using Enron-type accouting to cry poor. It’s not a surprise, unfortunately. The funny thing is, the M’s are owned by successful businessmen. In any business, the decision-makers must take calculated risks. Why can’t do the same with our ballclub?

  8. Bela Txadux on December 2nd, 2004 10:15 pm

    Actually, the thing that I like _most_ about Carlos D. is his refusal to be used as a billboard for American self-righteousness, and to the extent that I’ve followed this particular issue it is also clear that Carlos has gone miles out of his way to avoid making an issue of all this: it’s his _personal_ view, and he shoves it on nobody, particularly not on his team or his organization. It’s so rare to see an athlete in the public eye carry himself with both conviction and dignity on a matter of this scale (or of any scale), that to me his decision says quite alot positive about him as an individual. I’d like to have that individual on my team if I didn’t have major, very serious concerns about other issues affecting his future performance as an athlete.

    For the record, I actively despise the playing of “God Bless America” at the ballpark, and feel much the same way as Carlos seems to feel: my time and presence have been hijacked to give the appearance of support for someone else’s political and social agenda, an agenda which, to add injury to insult, I totally oppose.

    . . . Let’s sing Finlandia if we’ve got to sing anything: it’s about patriotism as a function of ones belief in ones fellow human beings. Sez me.

  9. Tim on December 2nd, 2004 11:12 pm

    I agree with Bela concerning Delgado’s personal dignity. On the other hand, while he is clearly no longer a $17M/year player (if he ever was), I don’t think he is washed up as an offensive force. I definitely would support the gamble of a $30M 3yr contract and probably even a 4th year at say $9M per.

  10. Gary Bloom on December 2nd, 2004 11:19 pm

    If the Ms don’t go after Delgado because of his politics, then will they not go after Beltran for publically endorsing W for re-election? Sorry Dave, but I thought that someone should point out that either politics count or they don’t.

  11. Gary Bloom on December 2nd, 2004 11:26 pm


  12. Daddy Driz on December 3rd, 2004 7:53 am

    Re: Post #37, even if the Yankees have grounds to void Giambi’s contract (which I highly doubt, see below) it will take a year or more of legal wrangling to be successful. Next offseason will the Yankees be able to get out of the contract? Perhaps. But it won’t affect this offseason.

    Now, as to whether a contract can be voided for steroids use, here is the clause in all MLB contracts:

    “7. (b) The Club may terminate this contract upon written notice to the Player (but only after obtaining waivers of this contract from all other Major League Clubs) if the Player shall at any time:

    (1) fail, refuse or neglect to conform his personal conduct to the standards of good citizenship and good sportsmanship or to keep himself in first-class physical condition or to obey the Club’s training rules; or

    (2) fail, in the opinion of the Club’s management, to exhibit sufficient skill or competitive ability to qualify or continue as a member of the Club’s team; or

    (3) fail, refuse or neglect to render his services hereunder or in any other manner materially breach this contract.”

    Think of how many teams would have had an argument under subparagraph (2), and how many have actually tried it. Right. 0. No team would want to take on the MLBPA by trying to invoke that clause, and the Yankees would be loath to invoke subparagraph (1), which is a fairly specious argument, anyway. IMHO.

  13. DMZ on December 3rd, 2004 9:39 am

    While technically it may be true that no team’s ever voided a contract based on that clause, teams can and have used related language in contracts to void them, or to negotiate buyouts for far below remaining contract value. Take Ron Gant, for instance, who saw his entire contract voided when he hurt himself in a bike accident.

  14. Ralph Malph on December 3rd, 2004 11:24 am

    They wouldn’t necessarily have to rely on that clause — fraudulent misrepresentation, or violation of the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing (assuming they could prove either), would be grounds for revocation of a contract.

  15. Bill on December 3rd, 2004 11:34 am

    If the Yankees do manage to void his contract, wouldn’t he be worth looking at as an option at 1b? Seems like 80% of juiced Giambi would still be a fine hitter…

  16. eponymous coward on December 3rd, 2004 12:51 pm

    It’s “reassuring” that our two targeted FA’s aren’t the best young players?

    Hello, lowered expectations!

  17. Nadav on December 3rd, 2004 1:26 pm

    Is it blasphemous to sing “God Bless the Mariners” instead of “God Bless America”? It kind of sounds the same, and they could use all the help they can get…

  18. Eric on December 3rd, 2004 3:44 pm


    Isn’t it a different clause that is used to void the contract when a player hurts himself in a non-baseball related activity, like Gant and Aaron Boone?

  19. DMZ on December 3rd, 2004 4:01 pm

    Generally, players have contracts beyond the standard ones, which include a specific (and often very long) list of specifically prohibited activities, so as to be absolutely clear about things they can’t do (so you can’t play basketball and claim that it’s a normal household activity blah blah blah). It’s really just a much more specific and rigid version of that clause, but if you got into (say) competitive knife-throwing and cut your tendons, they’d go after you on the standard language and not the specifics.

    If that makes sense.

  20. Evan on December 3rd, 2004 5:04 pm

    First of all, I thought Delgado was protesting weapons testing in Puerto Rico, not the war in Iraq.

    Second, I really don’t want Delgado playing for the Yankees. I really like Delgado, and I hate the Yankees. So, I WANT the Yankees to be stuck with Giambi’s contract. It was a terrible contract when they signed it.

    Third, if I’m Giambi’s lawyer, I want to track down whoever leaked that Grand Jury testimony. That leak might cost Giambi $80 million, and someone needs to pay for that.

    These Grand Jury leaks are what I find most irritating. Secret testimony should stay secret, regardless of its content. You could even make a credible case that the judiciary is at fault for failing to guarantee the secrecy of the proceedings.

  21. DMZ on December 3rd, 2004 5:09 pm

    “First of all, I thought Delgado was protesting weapons testing in Puerto Rico, not the war in Iraq.”

    He has protested against Vieques weapons testing before. His not standing for GBA isn’t specifically about anything, though Delgado says he associates playing the song with the US military action in Afghanistan and Iraq… so it’s mostly about that.

  22. Evan on December 3rd, 2004 5:16 pm

    Ahh, yes. Rereading the NY Times article, I understand his position better. Thanks.

    Yay him for having a position. I was equally supportive of Mike Piazza when he disputed global warming claims.

  23. Evan on December 3rd, 2004 5:36 pm

    Oh, and note that “the cream” and “the clear” didn’t qualify as “prescription” or “illegal” drugs while Giambi was using them, which is a required condition if the Yankees want to void the contract.

  24. LB on December 3rd, 2004 6:59 pm

    #51: Harping back on a previous thread, what other nation could give Mr. Delgado the opportunity to make millions of dollars playing baseball?

    Good question. According to his page at, Mr. Delgado was signed by the Toronto Blue Jays in 1988. Since then they have paid him more than $86 million to play baseball, so the answer to your question would be… Canada!

  25. Jeff on December 4th, 2004 11:26 am

    “I’d cite the New York Times (July 21, 2004) on this, but you have to buy the article”

  26. Jeff on December 4th, 2004 11:32 am

    Oops, I’m sorry about that.