Winston said recently Florida State football coach Jimbo Fisher was right when he said that the Heisman winner might play two more years of college football. “Obviously I’m a big baseball person, so that’s an accurate statement because I plan on playing baseball next season anyway,” Winston told the Associated Press.
Selig should find out how big a baseball person. It would be a heck of an exit for him.
The Texas Rangers drafted Winston in the 15th round of the 2012 draft out of high school, and even agreed to let him play for FSU while working out with the team. He declined, but Winston said he chose FSU because it would allow him to play both football and baseball.
I’m not talking about the Bo Jackson or Deion Sanders circus of playing both professional sports. I’m talking about baseball and only baseball – the best player in college football throwing curveballs instead of passes.
This may require an act by Selig under the best interests of the game – to do away with the necessities of drafting and slotting and rookie contracts and all that stuff. Come up with a figure and a team that would be attractive to Winston, and show him how he can start making money now – real money – and stop with those distractions like books and classes.
This is the very essence of the argument that baseball needs to win with today’s athletes. Show Winston that while Tony Romo has a $108 million contract, only $55 million of that is guaranteed. He gets hurt in a few years, and the Cowboys don’t have to pay the rest of that contract.
Clayton Kershaw just signed a seven-year, $215 million deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers. His arm falls off next week, and the Dodgers still owe him $215 million.
Winston not a starter? Okay, Jonathan Papelbon has made $53 million in nine years throwing pitches one inning at a time, and is slated to make another $39 million.
And he won’t be on radio row at the 2040 Super Bowl talking about how he can’t remember the way home sometimes.
• Thom Loverro is co-host of “The Sports Fix,” noon to 2 p.m. daily on ESPN 980 radio and espn980.com