Originally Posted by SI1020
That's roughly 120K a year in today's currency.
It depends on what inflation formula you use to make the adjustment, but that isn't the point. Still I doubt that fans would complain about Thornton's salary if the Sox were paying him substantially less than the current major league minimum.
The minimum salary for a major leaguer in 1970 was $13,500. The highest paid player on the White Sox was Aparicio making $40,000. There was no free agency, at least not on players' terms. Saving money didn't translate to signing a big free agent contract in the off-season. Aparicio couldn't even go to arbitration with his .313 batting average and Gold Glove. If he held out, he just wouldn't be paid while the White Sox deprived of his talents. (As it turned out, he was traded to the Red Sox in the off-season after the White Sox gave him a $20,000 raise.)
Salaries should have been irrelevant to fans. But when I went to the games before free agency, before the big money, fans would complain about salaries. I heard people complain after Hopkins dropped two foul pop-ups in a game that he dropped them using a $60 glove.
Getting rid of Thornton's salary for the remainder of the season will do nothing to improve the Sox because it doesn't save them money in the future. The trade will do nothing to improve the Sox if Jacobs doesn't develop into a productive major leaguer. The pitchers who replace Thornton in his role on the team will not be as dependable as he was, even as inconsistent as he was.
But fans will feel better if someone making so much money for so little production is gone. It has always been that way, as irrelevant as it is.