Anyone who follows baseball to some extent probably knows that Derek Jeter just got his 3,000th career hit. That’s a milestone for any major league baseball player. Fan Christian Lopez got his hands on the ball, a memento worthy of the Hall of Fame. He gave it back to Jeter. The Yankees, apparently in appreciation for his returning the ball to the man Lopez referred to as an “icon”, gave him prizes like luxury box seats for the rest of the season and signed memorabilia, among other thing. Now, Uncle Sam wants a piece.
You see, these are categorized as “prizes” and are subject to taxes. Lopez may well be on the hook for thousands of dollars. Estimates seem to range from $5,000 to $13,000.
Lopez seems to not be bothered by the whole thing.
If it comes down to that, Lopez says he’ll pay the tax man because he’s not about to relinquish his seats. The young government major says his family and friends will help him out.
“The IRS has a job to do, so I’m not going to hold it against them, but it would be cool if they helped me out a little on this,” Lopez told the News.
You know what would be really cool? If our tax code took a few things into account, like prizes and/or gifts. You have a 23 year old kid who does something incredibly cool (the ball could have sold at auction for at least a quarter of a million dollars), and now he’s going to get shafted by the whole ordeal.
Of course, why should I expect sanity from government? You’d think I’d be past that by now.