We spoke to Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey some weeks ago about, among other things, climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro. At the time, Dickey called his climb "nothing more than a glorified hike," though he acknowledged that there was some risk and that it was well within the Mets' rights to void his contract in the event of a mishap. Brian Costa of The Wall Street Journal checked in with Dickey and found him in the midst of training for the ascent, which will serve to raise funds and awareness for the Bombay Teen Challenge campaign against human trafficking.
The Mets, meanwhile, aren't particularly pleased with their knuckleballer braving scant oxygen and the risk of sickness or injury (also bear in mind that Dickey's inspiration for this adventure was a story about somebody dying on Kilimanjaro). Unfortunately for the organization, they can't do much more than fire off a strongly worded letter. And, apparently, that they did:
A few months ago, the Mets sent a letter to Dickey's agent warning him that they reserve the right to void the remaining year on his contract if he is injured on the mountain. They can't stop him from going, but they clearly would prefer he did not.
"If we thought it was a good idea, we wouldn't have sent the letter," Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said. "Beyond that, have we tried to dissuade him from going? It seems to me that the letter is enough of an effort to dissuade him, and he intends to go on nonetheless."
Well, they tried. Dickey leaves for Tanzania next month, and (knock on wood) should have an exciting, pain-free "hike" for a good cause.
(Tip of the hat to Deadspin.)