Recently some of us on twitter were discussing whether or not Willie Mays was somehow being paid by the Mets “Bobby Bonilla style.” While I imagined that would have come out (people like discussing the Wilpon/Katz financials) I wasn’t quite sure…
Stoneham, who a year early turned down Payson’s offer of $1 million for Mays, now wanted players — specifically infielder Teddy Martinez, and either Jon Matlack or Jim McAndrew.
M. Donald Grant knew Mays was all-but washed-up, and was not about to trade away useful players. In the end, minor league pitcher Charlie Williams and a reported $100,000 were sent to Frisco for Mays. Stoneham later insisted that he never got any money for Mays. Either way, Mays was back in New York.
One other interesting tidbit about the trade — in addition to the two-year deal paying Mays the aforementioned $165,000 per year, the Mets also agreed to pay Mays $50,000 per year for ten years upon his retirement. Stoneham was trying to work out a similar deal with Mays before the trade, and Stoneham, who always looked out for Mays, wanted to make sure he would be taken care of.