This has been brought up elsewhere on the interwebs, but I wanted to touch upon it a bit more here. Has uber agent Scott Boras lost a little bit off his fastball?
Two years ago he badly, badly botched the A-Rod opt out situation, both from a public relations standpoint and in grossly overestimating the market for his client. Had A-Rod not come crawling back to the Yankees on his own and had Hank Steinbrenner not been in a historically giving mood, A-Rod might have found himself without a suitor capable of matching the deal from which he opted out. Given the hard budgetary line Hal has drawn in the sand this off-season, consider how differently the A-Rod situation might have played out had Hal been calling all the shots two years ago.
That spring, Boras client Pedro Alvarez was the second pick in the draft. Under Boras' guidance, Alvarez did not sign a contract prior to the August 15th signing deadline. Not only did this lead to the MLBPA filing a grievance against the Pirates and Alvarez being temporarily placed on the restricted list, but it delayed the start of Alvarez' career and created bad blood between him and his ballclub before he even put on a uniform.
Last off season, he foolishly steered Jason Varitek away from accepting arbitration from the Red Sox, only to find that there wasn't much of a free agent market for the declining backstop. Varitek reupped with the Sox for $5M, while accepting arbitration would have guaranteed him a raise on the $9M he made in 2008. That deal did lead to Varitek having a $3M option for the upcoming season, but the $8M total over 2009-10 is less than what he would have earned in 2009 had he accepted arbitration.
This year, Boras gambled with Matt Holliday and was lucky enough to get the Cardinals to outbid themselves by several million dollars. As we all know by now though, Boras wasn't quite so lucky with Johnny Damon. Boras admittedly paid Damon no mind until the Holliday situation was resolved; completely overplayed his hand with the Yankees, Braves, and Giants; and is losing the public relations battle badly.
So here's a little unsolicited advice for Scott Boras. Take a good look at this picture:
Firstly Mr. Boras, if you don't remove your head from your ass in the immediate future, your client will be photographed golfing far more often since he'll no longer be playing baseball.
Secondly, take a good look at Johnny's swing. Perhaps you can market your client as a switch hitter, a dead low ball hitter from the right side, in a last ditch effort to squeeze a few extra million out of some poor, unsuspecting, mystery team.
(Photo from i-yankees)