Originally Posted by Frontman
I feel for Mark and his family, but next time get it in writing. He got hosed on a verbal promise, which is worthless.
Originally Posted by Nellie_Fox
Not entirely. I'm not a trained attorney, nor do I play one on TV, but a contract is made when there is an offer and an acceptance for a consideration (did I get that right counselors?) He can try to argue that there was a verbal contract. He might not prevail, but there is precedence for the enforcement of verbal contracts.
It may be that Mark's contract would be one required to be in writing, but verbal promises are not, in general, worthless.
Verbal promises are not "worthless." There are some types of contracts which must be in writing per the Statute of Frauds, but playing baseball is not one of those. The type of contracts that have to be written can be summed up using the acronym MYLEGS.
M=Marriage. This is when you marry someone for the exchange of something of value like a dowery or a pre-nup agreement.
Y= Year. This is for services that cannot be performed within one year of the agreement (today I agree to drive you to New York City for your son's graduation in 2015 in exchange for you paying me $20,000 upon arrival in NYC).
L=Land. Any transfer in an interest in land must be in writing.
E=Executor. This is the agreement for an Executor of a will or estate to be compensated.
G=Goods. A contract for the sale of goods over a certain price must be in writing.
S=Surety. You become a surety if you are to act as the guarantor for a third party's debts or other obligations.
The Parol Evidence Rule dictates whether or not evidence can be admitted of an alleged breach of a verbal agreement which does not appear in the written instrument. If there is a Scope Clause in the contract, then any verbal promises made which are not reduced to writing in the contract are out the window. A Scope Clause states that the written contract constituted the entirety of the agreement the parties reached and any promises made outside what is written is not enforceable.
If Buehrle's contract does not have a Scope Clause, then he could conceivably sue, but it would be very difficult for him to get in evidence of a verbal agreement to not trade him. Also, I seriously doubt there isn't a Scope Clause in the contract.