Davey Lopes told the team and the media yesterday that he would no longer be occupying the first base coach's box any longer for the Fightins. The reason: straight cash, homey.
Here's what Lopes said:
It's the principle of the thing. In any kind of work, you put a value on your worth to the organization and try to negotiate to the point where both parties are happy. They had their idea as to what they felt my value was monetarily and it wasn't close to what I was thinking about.How valuable was Davey Lopes to the Phillies? We all know the stats/facts - Davey controlled the running game and the Phils lead the league in stolen base percentage the last four years - but we might not know his true value until he leaves. Was he just fortunate to have Victorino, Rollins, Utley and Werth doing the running? Or was he truly a guru?
Was it a good offer? Yeah but it was something I felt I needed to do because of the fact that it's been happening my whole career. I believe you have to take a stand. You figure what your value is to an organization. Once you figure out what your value is to an organization, you have to be compensated for it.
Throughout baseball, coaches are paid on their importance to a club: pitching coach, hitting coach, bench coach, third base coach and then first base coach. That's not going to change, but there are always exceptions. The general philosophy in baseball is why pay someone $500,000 when there is a list who would take it for $100,000? You don't know if the guy will be as good, but the supply is greater than the demand.
Davey was exactly right though when he said "the supply is greater than the demand." There are hundreds of qualified ex-players who are willing and waiting to take the job for presumably less than Lopes.
Here's what I don't understand - despite his insistence on compensation and value, the decision couldn't have been about money. He won't get more taking the same job for another club. And he certainly won't make more not coaching anywhere. If it was about money and compensation, wouldn't he continue working until a better position was available? So it must be what he said at the beginning of the quote, "the principle of the thing." Principle? What the hell is principle, besides the excuse of the greedy?