Professional sports contracts have all sorts of different bonuses, including for difference performance related items, being on the roster on a certain date, etc. But for new Cleveland Indians slugger Edwin Encarnacion, he has a bonus in his contract which isn’t necessarily new, but is quite unique in today’s sports world.
Encarnacion’s three-year, $60 million contract has bonuses based on the Indians’ attendance during his time with the team.
The contract Encarnacion signed with Cleveland is already fairly massive, but could get boosted even more based on how much the Indians’ attendance goes up in 2017 and beyond. And while this might not sound like a big deal, as Heyman says, he could hit that maximum bonus pretty quickly.
Last year, the Indians averaged 19,650 fans during the regular season, which was 28th in baseball, bettering only the A’s and Rays. So with those new season tickets, combined with the fact the Indians were one win away from winning a World Championship, the attendance boom could be substantial for the club, leading to Encarnacion’s wallet getting fatter as well.
Remember, the Indians sold out 455 consecutive games from 1995 to 2001, which for seven years was the longest sellout streak in the sport. With one of the AL’s best hitters now in the heart of the lineup, plus the team getting healthy, this could be the beginning of a very fruitful relationship for Encarnacion and the Tribe.