Ex-Pirates slugger Bobby Bonilla made another $1.19 million | TribLIVE.com
Pirates/MLB

Ex-Pirates slugger Bobby Bonilla made another $1.19 million

Patrick Varine
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Tribune-Review file
Atlanta Braves Bobby Bonilla hits an RBI single off Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Bronson Arroyo in their game Tuesday, June 13, 2000 at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh.

Today isn’t former Pittsburgh Pirates slugger Bobby Bonilla’s birthday, but just like every July 1 for the next 16 years, he has nearly 1.2 million reasons to celebrate.

Thanks to a deferred contract put in place when Bonilla was released by the New York Mets following the 1999 season, Bonilla received an annual paycheck of $1.19 million every July 1 starting in 2011 and running through 2035.

When he was released, Bonilla was owed $5.9 million by the Mets, but his agent offered to defer the payment for a decade at 8 percent interest, which means that over the life of the deal, they’ll pay him $29.8 million.

The most bizarre part of the whole thing, however, is that Bonilla, now in his 50s, is still on the Mets payroll. Not only that, but he made more this year than half of the Mets current active roster.

And if that doesn’t make you feel bad, consider this: according to the adjusted salaries list at Spotrac.com, Bonilla made more money today than all but seven of the players on the Pirates’ active roster.

Naturally, when “Bonilla Day” rolls around each year, the social-media commentary comes hot and heavy.

The Trib’s Chris Adamski ranks it as the top July 1 holiday being celebrated today:

The Undefeated sums it up nicely via Eddie Murphy:

The look on Pete Alonso’s face makes it look like he just found out that Bobby Bonilla is making more than twice his salary even though the last time Bonilla batted for the Mets, Alonso was 5 years old:

According to NBC Sports, Bonilla’s deferred contract is hardly the worst one out there:

Twitter user CluelessMickey got the math wrong, but his heart is in the right place:

As Chris Adamski pointed out, today is also National Canada Day. However, as Twitter user Shawn Quilty points out:

And one wise tweet helpfully connects the past with the present:

Happy Bobby Bonilla Day, everyone. As always, celebrate responsibly.

Patrick Varine is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Patrick at 724-850-2862, [email protected] or via Twitter .

Categories: Sports | MLB | Pirates
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