1. Many fans would surely suppose that I had sold out.
2. Many baseball players would be bitterly disappointed, even hostile. They would wonder if I had used the Players Association for the sole purpose of getting myself a $20,000 raise. I would be baited as the man of principle who ran out of principle in one season. I would be ripped as the successful businessman who kept saying that "some things are more important than money" until his businesses disappeared and he signed with Washington. For money.
Too bad. Too bad for me. Too bad for those who might misunderstand or misrepresent me. Too bad that I had sacrificed only $100,000 or so in salary and only one year of my waning athletic career. I would have preferred enough wealth to pass up $100,000 a year for as long as it took the courts to rule on our principle. I would have preferred such wealth not only for its own green sake but because my public position would then have been uncomplicated. Too bad.
And too bad that I now was only a hop and a skip from bankruptcy. I called Marvin Miller and Dick Moss and Arthur Goldberg and told them that I would sign. I then called Short and signed.
Frederick Douglass was a Maryland slave who taught himself how to read. "If there is no struggle," he said, "there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and yet deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground.... Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and never will."
To see the Curt Flood case in that light is to see its entire meaning. I am back in the United States now ready to do my thing.