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The Prisoner's Dilemma and the Dollar Auction for Matsuzaka
2006-12-12 19:11
by Bob Timmermann

John Thorn wrote this lengthy piece which Maury Brown picked up for the Business of Baseball blog.

There is much talk of game theory and I am not one to judge how much sense it makes. I enjoyed reading it, but I will let everyone else try to make their own judgment about it.

The Matsuzaka contract deadline still holds at 9 pm PST Thursday. Will ESPN have a countdown clock and a live camera posted outside of the Scott Boras compound waiting for white smoke to come out?

2006-12-12 19:33:43
1.   Chyll Will
An equally important question: Do Theo Rumstein and Larry Luccheney have an exit strategy in place?
2006-12-12 23:51:40
2.   Greg Brock
So at what point to Boras and the Red Averages play against the WOPR in a game of tic tac toe?
2006-12-13 04:57:37
3.   Murray
Thorn makes an assumption I'm not sure is fair or correct: that the Lions cannot kick a portion of the posting fee to Matsuzaka.

It is one thing for the Red Sox to think they are entitled to a rebate on the posting fee. It would be strictly anti-competitive to allow them to place a high bid and then let them get a portion of it back. If the Times Sox wanted to pay less for the negotiating rights, then Boston should have bid less. No auction works that way. MLB's shill rightly pointed this out.

But MLB's interpretation of its own rules should have no bearing on the deal Matsuzaka might want to make with the Lions to share the posting fee. I'm not sure I understand why MLB's interpretation should carry any weight in a contractual negotiation between two citizens of Japan. It's in Matsuzaka's interest and the Lions' interest for them to share, in fact. I believe this happens in European Football all the time. Matsuzaka should borrow from Deacon McGuire, a leader in the formation of the Players' League in 1890, who said, "No man is going to sell my carcass unless I get half."

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