If you're not a New York Mets fan, you may be curious why Mets fans have been greeting each other with exclamations of "Happy Bobby Bonilla Day!" today.

July 1st holds a special place in the hearts of New York Mets supporters because of the unique phenomenon known as Bobby Bonilla Day, an unofficial holiday in New York.

Picture this: a retired professional ball player still getting a substantial paycheck from a team he last played for over two decades ago. Well, that's exactly what's happening with Bobby Bonilla and the Mets.

Every July 1st, the New York Mets cut a check for $1.19 million to Bonilla, as part of a deal that has become the stuff of baseball folklore.

In 1991, the Mets inked a record-breaking five-year, $29 million deal with Bonilla, which stood as the most lucrative contract in team sports at the time. Bonilla played for the Mets for the first three and a half seasons under that contract before being traded. He went on to clinch a World Series victory with the Marlins in 1997 and eventually made a return to the Mets after being included in Florida's roster overhaul following their championship win.

Then, in 2000, the Mets decided to let Bonilla go but to do that, they had to pay $5.9 million to end his contract with the team.

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Instead of making a lump sum payment to pay off Bonilla's contract, the team agreed to pay him an annual sum of nearly $1.2 million, with an 8% interest rate for 25 years, starting on July 1, 2011, and ending in 2035.

The reason for this deal was that the Mets' ownership was invested in a Bernie Madoff account at the time, which promised high returns, and they were banking on those returns to turn a hefty profit. Sadly, that didn't pan out which is why payments to Bonilla were deferred.

With the collapse of Madoff's Ponzi scheme, Bonilla's $5.9 million payout ballooned to $29.8 million between 2000 and 2011. Dividing this total by 25 years results in the annual $1.19 million payment.

So, although he was cut from the team, Bonilla made out in the end - to the tune of 29.8 million dollars for doing...absolutely nothing which is a good gig if you can get it.

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