The Dodgers had just dished out the largest contract ever for a right-handed pitcher, giving them four players with average annual values of at least $20 million and putting them in position to have the highest payroll in baseball history next season.
So at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday, site of yet another big-ticket press conference, Magic Johnson was predictably asked about the new, free-spending philosophy of the organization. At that point, the Lakers legend picked himself up from his chair, leaned to his right to get within range of the podium microphone and gave the only response he felt he needed to:
"We want to win."
The latest example of that desire was standing right next to him in the form of Zack Greinke, who agreed Saturday to a six-year, $147 million contract with the team many expected him to end up with when his free-agent process began.
Greinke badly wants to win, too. And until his three-hour November meeting with Dodgers president Stan Kasten, general manager Ned Colletti and skipper Don Mattingly, the 29-year-old right-hander didn't realize just how much winning he can do here.
Then they all went through the roster together.
"When I wrote all the lineups down and the pitching staffs down on paper, it made me realize how good the Dodgers actually are," Greinke said. "When I was here earlier this year, the team was a lot different."
Read more: Desire to win compelled pitcher Zack Greinke to pick Dodgers | MLB.com: News