By: Bob Elliott
There was an air of excitement inside Rogers Centre this September.
It went from coast to coast and permeated the home clubhouse as well.
When the Blue Jays met to vote on post-season shares in September they were in a giving mood.
The 21 players either active or on the disabled list for the whole season voted full shares to six players acquired at the trade deadline and four others who had been demoted to triple-A Buffalo during the season.
In all, the Jays voted 58 1/4 full shares of $141,834.47 from the Players’ Pool of $8,395,857 based on reaching the League Championship Series.
Now, you would think voting full shares to everyday players like Troy Tulowitzki and Ben Revere, ace David Price, relievers Mark Lowe and LaTroy Hawkins plus back-up infielder Cliff Pennington would be a slam-dunk no doubter.
Yet in 1989 when the Jays only rallied to catch the Baltimore Orioles and win the American League East it was because of the play addition of Mookie Wilson. Acquired July 31 from the New York Mets for Jeff Musselman and Mike Brady, the Jays would not have won without Wilson going 37-29 after he arrived.
When players voted Wilson was given 34% of the $40,000 share, because he was on the roster for 34% of the season. Wilson also received half a share from the Mets.
Al Leiter (injured, received $40,000), Bob Brenly (released, $18,600) and Jeff Musselman (traded, $15,600) all received larger shares than Wilson ($13,600).
No one knew for sure how much those involved in the Alex Anthopoulos airlift would receive.
Tulowitzki, Price, Revere, Price, Lowe and Hawkins all arrived between July 28 and July 31. Pennington was acquired Aug. 8. So all six were basically only entitled to roughly a 1/3 share under the Basic Agreement.
Other players voted full shares were Ezequiel Carrera, Drew Hutchinson, Aaron Loup and Ryan Tepera,
Hutchison appeared in 30 games making 28 starts and pitching 150 1/3 innings and sharing for second for the team lead in wins (13). He was sent to Buffalo Aug. 17 and recalled eight days later.
Loup appeared in 60 games pitching 42 1/3 innings. He was demoted to western New York Aug. 17 and recalled Sept. 1.
Carrera started 44 games for the Jays and played in 91 games with 192 plate appearances. He opened the season at Buffalo, was recalled May 2, designated for him assignment Aug. 1, re-signed to a Buffalo contract Aug. 3 and promoted Aug. 18.
Tepera started at Buffalo was recalled May 8, demoted June 22, recalled July 30, sent to Buffalo Aug. 1 and recalled Sept. 1.
Who received what was never about performance, it was about service time and the electorate.
When Doyle Alexander joined the Detroit Tigers on Aug. 12 in 1987 he won nine of 11 starts and was voted three-quarters of a share.
Manager John Gibbons and his seven-man coaching staff received full shares as did the Jays support staff of bullpen catcher Alex Andreopoulos and batting practice pitcher Jesus Figueroa, plus equipment manager Jeff Ross, travelling secretary Mike Shaw, trainers George Poulis and Mike Frostad, plus strength coach Chris Joyner.
Jose Reyes, who was dealt to the Colorado Rockies for Tulowitzki, Danny Valencia, traded to the Oakland A’s and Steve Delabar, who began the season at Buffalo, all received 3/4 shares. Mississauga’s Dalton Pompey, Jeff Francis of North Delta, B.C. who now lives in London and Munenori Kawasaki all received half shares.
Pompey was sent out May 2 and recalled Sept. 1, so he was basically on the roster for 1/3 of the six-month season.
Francis was added from Buffalo April 19, outrighted May 20 and was promoted Sept. 1. Again roughly two months.
Kawasaki was recalled May 31, demoted June 10, promoted June 19, returned to Buffalo June 26, was recalled Aug. 1, demoted Aug. 9 and took the Buffalo shuttle a final time Sept. 1.
Players gave out 39 cash grant and partial shares to non-uniformed staff ranging from 3/4 share to $1,000.
We think they did a good job on the incoming players ... much better job than the 1989 Jays did with Mookie Wilson.
Blue Jays post-season shares
Automatic full share ($141,834.47 US) players: Jose Bautista, Mark Buehrle, Brett Cecil, Chris Colabello, R.A. Dickey, Josh Donaldson, Edwin Encarnacion, Marco Estrada, Ryan Goins, Liam Hendriks, Maicer Izturis, Russell Martin, Dioner Navarro, Roberto Osuna, Kevin Pillar, Aaron Sanchez, Michael Saunders, Bo Schultz, Justin Smoak, Marcus Stroman, Devon Travis.
Manager and coaches: John Gibbons, Demarlo Hale, Brook Jacoby, Dane Johnson, Tim Leiper, Luis Rivera, Pete Walker, Eric Owens.
Voted full shares ($141,834.47): Ezequiel Carrera, LaTroy Hawkins, Drew Hutchison, Aaron Loup, Mark Lowe, Cliff Pennington, David Price, Ben Revere, Ryan Tepera, Troy Tulowitzki,
3/4 share ($106,375.85): Steve Delabar, Jose Reyes, Danny Valencia,
1/2 share ($70,917.24): Jeff Francis, Munenori Kawasaki, Dalton Pompey,
1/4 shares: ($35,458.62): Matt Hague, Todd Redmond,
$5,000 grants: Darwin Barney, Miguel Castro, Scott Copeland, Jonathan Diaz, Felix Dubront, Chad Jenkins, Daniel Norris, Josh Thole, Steve Tolleson,
$2,500 grant: Colt Hynes
$1,000 cash grant: Phil Coke
$0: Matt Boyd (6 2/3 innings), Andrew Albers (2 2/3 innings), Rob Rasmussen (one inning).
Voted full shares ($141,834.47 US): Equipment manager Jeff Ross, travelling secretary Mike Shaw, bullpen catcher Alex Andreopoulos, batting practice pitcher Jesus Figueroa, trainer George Poulis, assistant Mike Frostad, strength and conditioning co-ordinator Chris Joyner.
(To bullpen catcher, massage therapist, public relations, scouting co-ordinator, security, clubhouse manager, clubhouse staff, grounds crew, video co-ordinator, umpire’s room attendant, coach, visiting clubhouse attendant, cook, player relations, marketing, special events, photographer, bat boys, ball boys, and others).
Two 3/4s shares ($106,375.85)
Seven half shares ($70,917.24)
One cash grant of $45,000
Seven quarters shares ($35,458.62)
One grant of $15,000
Five 10% shares (14,183.45)
Two grants of $5,000
One grant of $2,500
Thirteen grants of $1,000.