x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

Weaver pitches it right for love of the game

Security and pitching where he grew up held more value than money and contract to Weaver, a contender for the Cy Young Award.

It may be a while before another contract extension catches as many people by surprise as Jered Weaver's did last week.

Out of nowhere, Weaver agreed to a five-year, US$85 million (Dh312.2m) extension with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim.

It is highly unusual for clients of the agent, Scott Boras, to agree to any sort of contract extension because Boras is in the habit of advising clients to test the free-agent market, where their services can be bid on by 29 other teams.

In this case, Weaver probably cost himself tens of millions of dollars by staying put before he was eligible for free agency after the 2012 season. He surely would have been one of the most in-demand starting pitchers available a year or so from now.

But Weaver, who grew up in southern California and pitched his college ball at Long Beach State, wanted to remain close to home.

Security and pitching where he grew up held more value to Weaver, a contender for the Cy Young Award.

At a news conference to announce his signing, Weaver asked: "How much more money do you need? I've never played this game for money. I play it for love and for championships … I could have gotten more, whatever, who cares? I'm here, and that's all I care about."

Weaver won't exactly be living hand-to-mouth with his deal, but his comments – and actions – are refreshing in an era when most athletes seemingly are intent to take every last dollar off the table.


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