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Happy Bobby Bonilla Day! Former major leaguer gets $1.19m every year for not playing baseball

Bonilla last played ball in 2001, but still gets paid every July 1 by the Mets.
Happy Bobby Bonilla Day! Former major leaguer gets $1.19m every year for not playing baseball
Posted at 8:57 AM, Jul 01, 2020

Happy Bobby Bonilla Day, New York Mets fans.

The former major league baseball player gets a check for nearly $1.2 million Mets every July 1.

Not a bad retirement plan.

Under his contract, he gets the check every year until 2035, when he'll be 72.

The Mets wanted to part ways with Bonilla in 1999, but he still had $6 million left on his contract.

Mets owner Fred Wilpon negotiated a deal to defer payments until 2011, followed by the annual payments, plus, an 8% annual interest rate.

Why the deferment?

So the Mets could invest the money with now-disgraced financier Bernie Madoff for a big return.

But it turned out Madoff was running the most notorious Ponzi scheme in history, and the Mets ended up among the victims.

In total, Bonilla will end up with $29.8 million because of Wilpon's huge bad call.

And in 2012, Wilpon paid $162 million to Madoff victims' fund after auditors found he actually profited from the Ponzi scheme.