Catcher Gary Carter was paid $2.07 million, including incentives, in the 1986 season by the New York Mets, making him the highest-paid player in baseball, according to a story in USA Today. Carter added $100,000 by finishing third in the National League's Most Valuable Player voting.
However, former Met George Foster made more money than Carter by not playing. Foster, who was cut by the Mets in August and played briefly with the Chicago White Sox, was paid a salary of $1.8 million and received $1 million as a buyout of his 1987 contract. He also received a $200,000 pro-rated signing bonus.