TAMPA, Fla. — We learned a few years after Glavine had left the Braves to sign with the Mets, that he had significant after-the-fact misgivings about his decision to change uniforms. We learned from the pages of a book written by then-Braves general manager Schuerholz that Glavine spoke to the Braves Rudy Gay Jersey the day after agreeing to sign with the Mets and that he seriously considered reversing field. Glavine certainly didn’t need to move to the larger market to make his mark the big leagues. He had won 20 five times and won two National League Cy Awards before he left for the big city. Length and value of contract were issues, of course. But it’s not as though Glavine would have retired a baseball pauper had he re-signed with the Braves for less than the $50,000 million he earned five seasons with the Mets. The New area did have some intrinsic lure, of course. The Glavine family anticipated enjoying its time the suburbs north of Stadium. And it did. Other Vlade Divac Jersey factors influenced Glavine’s decision, not the least of which involved his extended family, which was located the Northeast. His standing the Major League Baseball Players Association was not one of them, contrary to what some believed. Glavine was more than active the union; he was the NL player rep for the better part of 10 years and articulate and candid spokesman for the union. None of that should suggest he chose the Mets rather than the Braves because of what it would mean to the MLBPA. One hundred percent nothing to do with decision, Glavine said late Tuesday afternoon by phone from his home outside Atlanta. The Braves’ offer wasn’t at all comparable to the Mets’, but… It ticked me off that people suggested that when I signed, he said. Anyone who knew me knows family came first. The union never tried to influence me, and there was nothing I was considering that had anything to do with what was best for the union. Shortly after Glavine signed with the Mets — early December 2002 — he made that clear by saying, The players who did much to gain freedom for themselves and for the guys who have followed didn’t go through all that another outside party could influence our decision. They won freedom, and now we have it and we should use it.
No one’s whispering our ears. Glavine retains strong feelings and abiding appreciation for the MLBPA. Understandably; his baseball salaries totaled nearly $130 million. Glavine and his family live comfort. He readily understands how it came to be that they are financially set for 30 lifetimes. Thirty franchises and 25 roster spots per club yield merely 750 job openings. And at any time, how millions of 20-somethings and veterans of past big league seasons seek jobs that competitive field? Those 750 are indeed elite and, as the founding father of the union, Marvin, taught this disciples, elite skills warrant elite compensation. Winning 305 clearly put Glavine among the elite of all time. Glavine, of course, had worked closely with Donald Fehr when Fehr was the executive director of the MLBPA. And after the hockey players hired Fehr and gave him the identical title 2010, Glavine’s interest shifted to the sport that had been one of his two passions as adolescent. Fehr hardly was familiar with the hockey players, and he wanted them to become familiar with him, to develop the level of trust the baseball players had the union staff. Fehr asked Glavine to share his thoughts with his new members. I just had a couple of conversations with some players, Glavine said Tuesday. I ‘t know how much influence I had. Glavine spoke of the need to remain united, as the baseball players had. And he stayed touch with Fehr during the lockout that threatened the 2012 season. Of course, Glavine isn’t directly responsible for the Jan. 12 settlement. But introducing Fehr to some of his membership and characterizing him was a positive step. Don’s a smart guy, Glavine said. And I wanted to dispel the improper perception that he makes demands the players follow him. Mostly Don and I spoke about experiences. We compared what the hockey players were going through to what the baseball players had experienced. Some of it was eerily similar. Glavine worried that the entire NHL season would become a casualty of the third work stoppage — all lockouts — once the Winter was canceled. Settlement came 12 days after the scheduled date. I’d been through that before, he said, a reference to cancellation of the 1994 World Series. I didn’t want anything like that to happen again. Those worries gone, Glavine moved deeper into the sport he left behind once he signed with the Braves 1984. He and two of his sons — 12-year-old Mason and 14-year-old Peyton — spent 10 days Toronto last month. The boys, members of a travel team from the Atlanta area, were competing the Quebec International Pee Wee Hockey Tournament, a prestigious event Glavine missed when he was skating Massachusetts as a teenager and attracting the attention of NHL teams. It’s big to-do, he said. It was great experience for them, and I really enjoyed time there. A little costly, but well worth it. And Glavine had the money because of the union. His gratitude is understood. is a columnist for. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.