Quick Hits: Boras, Drew, Red Sox, Orioles

In an interview with Peter Gammons, Scott Boras expressed his confidence that Stephen Drew and Kendrys Morales will find good contracts with teams that will put more value on their contributions than the value of (possibly second- or third-round) draft picks.  With that said, Boras also believes the free agent system needs to be changed to give players more freedom and to encourage teams to spend.  “We should be doing everything possible to try to get smaller market teams the necessary veteran leadership to contend,” Boras said.  His suggestions include banning qualifying offers for players over 30 years old, and a monetary compensation system for teams who lose free agents under age-30 that the clubs can re-invest in signings or draft spending.

Here's some more from around the baseball world…

  • An executive on a team that explored signing Stephen Drew told Andy Martino of the New York Daily News yesterday that Drew's medicals were raising some concerns.  Another source tells WEEI.com's Rob Bradford today (Twitter link) that Drew is "perfectly healthy.  No physical issues."
  • The Red Sox are looking to add outfield depth, Jason Mastrodonato of MassLive.com reports, and Scott Podsednik is one name on Boston's current long list of external candidates.  Ryan Gleichowski, Podsednik's agent, recently told Mastrodonato that Podsednik was in shape and eager to continue his career after sitting out the 2013 season.  We also recently heard that the Sox have some interest in Padres outfielder Chris Denorfia.
  • The Red Sox will have an estimated $96MM coming off the books following the 2014 seasons, WEEI.com's Alex Speier writes, leaving the team with lots of flexibility to re-sign David Ortiz and/or Jon Lester, as well as explore new player acquisitions.
  • The Orioles seem to be using a "stars and scrubs" strategy in building their team, Fangraphs' Dave Cameron writes, and the tactic doesn't seem to be working given the clear holes on the roster and their relatively limited payroll space.
  • Liz Mullen of Sports Business Journal reports (subscription required) that Dan Lozano's MVP Sports Group has hired former Dodgers director of Asian operations Acey Kohrogi to serve as the firm's head of Asian operations.  Kohrogi spent 18 years with the Dodgers and helped them attract the likes of Hideo Nomo, Takashi Saito, Hiroki Kuroda, Chan Ho Park and Hong-Chih Kuo to the Major Leagues.
  • The Phillies' new 25-year, $2.5 billion TV contract will theoretically pay them an average of $100MM per year, though David Murphy of the Philadelphia Daily News crunches the numbers to explain how that $100MM average will actually work out to a much smaller annual payout.  MLBTR's Jeff Todd also recently examined the Phillies' TV deal and noted that the contract could just help the team continue its high-spending ways, rather than allow them to raise payroll even more.
  • The Giants' bullpen and the Blue Jays' second base platoon project as the worst positions on contending teams, according to Fangraphs' Jeff Sullivan.  The Giants' pen projects as below-replacement level as a group thanks to several pitchers that could be declining, while the Jays' Maicer Izturis/Ryan Goins platoon stands out as a weak spot.  The Dodgers' second base spot also technically makes Sullivan's list, though he says that's only due to a lack of information about the newly-signed Alexander Guerrero.

60 Responses to Quick Hits: Boras, Drew, Red Sox, Orioles Leave a Reply

  1. Leonard Washington 2 years ago

    If all goes well part of that 96M will be going towards an extension for Xander.

    • LazerTown 2 years ago

      Maybe you should let him get 50 ab first.

      • johnsilver 2 years ago

        He’s a Boras client, Before 50AB might be only chance, as risky as it is.

        For another item.. 2b is blocked in Boston for at least 5-6 years with pedroia.. I’d like to see Mookie Betts switched to CF. Speed galore, plenty of patience at the plate and knows how to hit,plus unlike JBJ? No Boras. He’s a couple years away anyway and better than giving him away in a trade as hard as it is to develop top people are.

        • Leonard Washington 2 years ago

          I think we need to petition Pedroia to brainwash Xander into switching agents/working out with him.

        • Bob Bunker 2 years ago

          I agree that they should try to extend Xander as hard as possible. Due to his high projected floor, giving him even double the first Longoria extension carries practically no risk.

          As for Betts I think that he should start trying out the OF or SS and if he can’t fit in either position then he becomes one of their best trade pieces since trades might be the best route to fill holes on the team over the next few years if they want to avoid long term commitments.

          • LazerTown 2 years ago

            Now you just sound crazy.

            Every single prospect carries quite a bit of risk. An extension might make sense for him, but unless he wants to really be there, Boras clients tend to like arbitration, and dislike buying out free agent years.

          • Bob Bunker 2 years ago

            Alright I know an extension is not risk free but almost everything I have read on him is that he is a 2 WAR floor player and he is projected to start producing at that level next year. 2 WAR costs 10-12 million a year so it seems crazy not try try to extend him to a 6 year contract that would have an AAV of 3-6 million with options that could cover his first free agent years. Just so much potential cost savings and with a big market team the risk is minimal because 3-6 million AAV is absolutely nothing.

            Lastly, I believe if the extension is done a week after Opening Day it doesn’t count towards the 2014 luxury tax considerations so its even less risky considering the 91 million coming off the books next off season.

          • johnsilver 2 years ago

            Think he played SS in HS and was moved to 2b when he started playing pro 2 years ago. To me? he didn’t look the greatest at greenville the games I watched on MiLB,com games, but just me.

            Just don’t like moving people with the patience to get the pitch they want to hit, or take the walk this kid has the ability of and Betts is really fast. Cecchini has the eye at the plate and bat, but not the speed, Betts is a base ripper.

            Some are saying Boston let Ells get away.. It would be nice if maybe Betts could slide into CF, even a corner spot, even if he’s not a big power threat.

            Yes on extending Bogaerts, but only if they can strike early and Bogaerts has input on it. Boras isn’t generally keen on those.

      • Leonard Washington 2 years ago

        That is built into my comment is it not??? Ya know “If all goes well” and he has 500 successful At-bats. If he comes out and has a great season you don’t think we should use some of that money for an extension?????

        • LazerTown 2 years ago

          He has Boras though. Do you think on the other hand that he will want to sign a team friendly extension after a great season?

    • James F 2 years ago

      Without reading any of the other comments, not many Boras clients have signed extensions and on top of that, it’s best to get a full season out of Bogaerts before they even think about signing him to an extension.

  2. Cyyoung 2 years ago

    It makes no sense if the Sox sign Drew now. Take the pick, play Xander.

    • pft2 2 years ago

      He will play anyways, either at SS or 3B. I think they worry Xander will not be able to handle SS very well, or that as a SS he will cost much more to extend or in arbitration. Still can’t see Drew going into that situation for 1 yr though, one slump or DL stint and fans will be all over him for taking one of the kids jobs

  3. finman84 2 years ago

    Of course Boras wants to encourage teams to spend. Higher contracts for his clients equals a bigger payday for the agent. Memo to Scott- if you are so interested in small market teams contending- go into retirement. You are part of the problem, not the solution.

    • kungfucampby 2 years ago

      No I believe the problem is “small market teams” not spending any money despite having it.

      • Chet Steadman 2 years ago

        Exactly, plenty of money going into the owners pockets with raising ticket prices and food/drink. You should’nt be allowed to purchase a team unless you can put a 80mill+ team on the field.

      • jazznbluz 2 years ago

        That’s only part of the problem. The other is layers, who obviously are one dimensional like Morales or Cruz, are on the wring side of 30 and have either a PED or injury history (Cruz has both) thinking they are worth more than they really are. Small market teams are willing to spend, but giving long-term contracts worth unreasonable amounts of money to short-term solutions is not a very wise business strategy. On the other hand, these players are looking to secure their future financially. Hopefully/eventualy, there will be a middle ground somewhere as layers like Morales and Drew are good enough to play, but neither are long-term solutions, both have injury histories, and in Morales’ case, he is very one-dimensional.

    • pft2 2 years ago

      What an awful world we live in that someone is willing to work to make sure the player worker gets a fair deal after 6 years of servitude. Pity the billionaire owner who gets to pay Mike Trout league minimum for 10 WAR. I mean, we have the owner of the Brewers, who is 25 million per year richer for a National TV deal, saying he does not want to pay more than 6 million for a free agent when the average MLB team pays 50% of revenues on players salary. Not to mention the revenue sharing dollars he gets.

      • Mark Davis 2 years ago

        Baseball really needs some sort of salary cap mechanism, like football has. So that rich (big market) teams can’t spend more than a certain amount, and small market teams are forced to spend a certain amount.

        • kungfucampby 2 years ago

          This just hurts player salaries and makes owners more wealthier than they already are.

          No thanks.

          • Thechairman66 2 years ago

            If a player is getting paid $14M per year I’m not too concerned about their salary.I’d rather have parity than ensure players are getting paid an extra couple of million

          • Thechairman66 2 years ago

            If a player is getting paid $14M per year I’m not too concerned about their salary.I’d rather have parity than ensure players are getting paid an extra couple of million

        • johnsilver 2 years ago

          Don’t put much into this rant by Boras. Just remember he pulls this stunt every offseason late after he miscalculates the market late for one (or more) or his mid to lower tier clients and is blame shifting to try and redirect it from himself to lack of spending on the owners.

          He will find a buyer for both Morales and Drew, but it will be for What the owners and market share is now that rosters are settling in now, rather than inflated rates Boras was asking for earlier.

          Boras and his never sign early in the off season, always ask for maximum salary, never accept a QO/accept arbitration has got to become flexible at some point and accept responsibility to his clients rather than cry wolf.

        • LazerTown 2 years ago

          So that the owners get more of the money, and the players get less? The players are the stars, they are what we get excited about, and cheer on. They should get paid according to the demand for them.

      • Croagnut 2 years ago

        Ummh Boras is a billionaire too, probably richer than most of the owners. And what the deal with “servitude” can’t they leave anytime they want and get a job somewhere else? Seriously, this isn’t slavery. Players are getting paid millions of dollars, while being treated like celebrities to play a kids game.

        • kungfucampby 2 years ago

          Boras is worth about $175-200MM.

          Most MLB owners have that in between their couch cushions.

          • Croagnut 2 years ago

            Boras is worth a lot more than 175mil, I don’t care what a quick Google search says. A quick search also, says there are only 5 billionaire baseball owners. Not buying either. Boras’s worth is all hidden in Boras Corp.

  4. sourbob 2 years ago

    Is the problem really that guys like Nelson Cruz and Kendrys Morales are tied to draft picks, or is that they didn’t have the sense to see this coming and accept qualifying offers?

    • pft2 2 years ago

      How would you like it if you could not leave your job because you had to pay your boss compensation for his loss (or the company you want to work for will) This despite working at below market rates for 6 years. Your alternative is to stay 1 more year in a job you hate and pass up that 3 yr deal that guarantees more money. Because the nature of your job is dangerous and has no disability pay, a serious injury while staying with the job you hate will limit your future earnings amd that 3 yr guaranteed deal is forever gone. So even though you made good money for that year, you lost more money over 3 years.

      Anyways, like Boras says, all these guys will get paid if they have the patience to wait. Look at Lohse last year.

      • Croagnut 2 years ago

        How do you figure the first 6 years of a players contract is “below market”? Everyone has to do the same service time to achieve free agency, and there is an arbitration system to supplement overachievers. It would be ‘exactly market rate’. Also, “job you hate”? Way to go for hyperbole. Has Morales and Drew said they hate their employer?

      • Karkat 2 years ago

        I would love if my job offered me 14 million dollars, which is way more than I’m worth, that I would get regardless of performance or if they decided to let me go at some point. Stop comparing playing in the MLB to normal people jobs.

      • NickinIthaca 2 years ago

        No disability pay? Pretty sure Kendrys Morales got paid the entire year and a half he missed after injuring himself JUMPING on home plate in celebration.

      • Leonard Washington 2 years ago

        Why is it that baseball players shouldn’t have to work for years to get major raises like normal people???? Are they more important than us???? So if I start a job for 60K a year fresh out of college and then work my butt off for a one year and help the company a lot I’m justified in asking for double to ten times the amount???? Baseball teams make a lot of money you say??? So do other major corporations. The Angels took a chance on a prospect and developed him into what he is. That investment in him is super cheap for about three years. That is more than fair for helping him to hone his craft to a level where he will now be able to break records in arbitration and the free agent market.

      • WhoKilledTheRallyMonkey 2 years ago

        O poor Morales, he was only offered 14 Mil for one year of work he hates (not sure where the hate part came from but whatever)…. I could retire after a 1 year 14 Mil dollar contract and live out the rest of my life quite comfortably.

  5. Chebert 2 years ago

    I am beyond sick of Boras using the media to complain about the Qualifying Offer system at every possible opportunity. He acts like skyrocketing veteran salaries are great for baseball as a whole (actually, they are good for players and for agents) and the scary part is, a portion of the fans are completely buying into it! Here’s an idea: if your client is Kendrys Morales and he is offered a one-year deal fro $14,000,000… advise him to take it! He’s Kendrys Morales!

    • YODA777 2 years ago

      Overall, Boras has been bad for baseball fans. Because of Boras, we now get to pay $20+ for parking and $50+ for decent seats at the ballpark. Thanks Scott.

  6. John Donovan 2 years ago

    It’s hard to take that Jeff Sullivan Fangraphs article seriously when they are projecting 7 NL teams as non-playoff contenders including 1 team that made the playoffs last years, the Reds. There will be 5 playoff teams in the NL and this guy thinks only 8 of them will even compete for those spots. It is ridiculous to theoretically write off half the league as “non-contenders” even before Spring Training begins. I can’t take the rest of the numbers seriously when the writer doesn’t use logic with his most basic data.

    • Logic was used. Excluding the Reds was puzzling, but do you see any of those other teams as true playoff contenders? There’s no formula for projecting massive upsets.

      • John Donovan 2 years ago

        Are you saying it is logical to only include 2 of 5 teams in both the East and Central divisions as “contenders?” It wouldn’t be a massive upset if the Phillies or Mets or Brewers or Reds or Padres were in wild card contention in August or September. Heck even the Cubs could have a turnaround year.

        The Rockies are my favorite team, and they were included as contenders. Do you see them as a team with a better chance at the Wild Card than the Reds or the Phillies or any of the other teams? Do you see the Giants or Diamondbacks as being much better than those other teams? My point is why exclude so many teams when you included teams that aren’t that much better if they are even better at all.

  7. Croagnut 2 years ago

    I think Boras is manipulating the system and the media to put on a show. He has guys he knows he should recommend QO to (Drew, Morales, Lohse), then holds them out and for as long as he can . The whole time he’s on a soapbox crying what a terrible system it is. So is it an unfair system or Boras just trying to maximize every last penny while keeping the media focused on him?

    • stl_cards16 2 years ago

      Why should Lohse have accepted the QO offer?

      • daveineg 2 years ago

        He would have been paid nearly $3 million more last year, and coming off another solid season, (11-10. 3.35 ERA), he would have at least gotten either another QO or a 2 year deal comparable or better than the 2 year/$22 million left on his deal. He also would not have missed most of spring training, which likely led to his slow start.

  8. Lefty_Orioles_Fan
    Lefty_Orioles_Fan 2 years ago

    Dave Cameron: O’s using a “Stars and Scru…” Strategy. A What ????
    I never heard of that LOL… well whatever it is having 8 eight outfielders to replace Nate McClouth is a bit absurd. Honestly, I don’t think the O’s filled any of their holes, plus the “Duke” never fully identified them. Showalter likes to keep things on the down low. Sort of like when C-3PO was disintegrated in the Empire Strikes back and

    Lando Calrissian asks Han Solo: Problem with your droid? Han answers, no, no problem! What are you talking about it? Well… there is a problem!

  9. Cyyoung 2 years ago

    Boras got out-smarted by Ben, he gave the QO knowing he would reject it. My bet is he was looking to get Draft pick all along. No sense to sign him now. Saw Bogaerts at Double AA, he is no slouch at SS. I don’t know where he is not a good Defensive SS talk is coming from.

    • ChancellorZed 2 years ago

      Could the talk simply be an age and innings question? He certainly didn’t look as if he couldn’t handle the position – but was slightly choppy at times. He is very young and will only get better when working with Butterfield. If they didn’t think Bogaerts could handle it they wouldn’t be waiting out Drew, they would have resigned him.

  10. What’s next for Boras? Is he going to say that all AL teams should carry a DH only player? Boras should’ve learned from the ho hum markets for Bourn and Lohse and figured that Morales would suffer as well. Drew was a bit harder to predict I guess.

  11. Razalnek 2 years ago

    How about tilting the national TV revenue toward the teams who don’t have multi-billion $$ local broadcast deals.

    • daveineg 2 years ago

      Who do you think runs MLB, George Halas and Wellington Mara? Of course that’s a great solution, but MLB has never had the foresight of the NFL and it’s large market owners back in the day who knew the game was only as strong as it’s weakest franchise.

  12. Cyyoung 2 years ago

    I’m thinking Boras was expecting the Cards to go after him, Mozeliak smart GM, knows the importance of Picks in a Deep Draft.

  13. ReneNYM1 2 years ago

    .We can forget about signing any SS next year when Boston has 85 million coming off their books.We should get Drew for 3 yrs at 30 million now.

  14. WhoKilledTheRallyMonkey 2 years ago

    The QO system is not what is broken, its agents, like Boras, overvaluing players that is the problem.

    Take Kendrys Morales for example, he has averaged only 1.6 fWAR over the last 4 seasons. The Mariners offered him a 14 Mil dollar QO which would have almost tripled his 2013 salary, 5.2 Million. Morales is only worth about 9.6 Mil per year based on his production so the Mariners would have really overpaid for one year on Morales. When players like Morales start accepting QO’s teams will be more wary of offering them.

    Boras not the QO system is to blame here!

  15. daveineg 2 years ago

    Scott Boras advising MLB owners to act in his clients interests. Yeah that will fly.

  16. itstheduke 2 years ago

    That’s funny, I didn’t realize the Blue Jays were a contending team.

  17. SwingtimeInTheRockies 2 years ago

    Sure, they are self-serving but I actuallty don’t hate Boras’ suggestions to ban Qualifying Offers to players over 30 (maybe make it 32?) and rely on a monetary- rather than draf pick- compensation system to allow smaller market teams to reinvest after they lose a free agent. To make this work, there has to be some sort of floor to ensure that the extra compensation is spent to improve the team. It doesn’t do the game any good if a Scott Boras gets paid, and a Jeff Loria or a Dick Monfort pockets their end of the compensation.

  18. Norwood North 2 years ago

    Baseball has changed. Free Agency greed forced the owners/teams to only sign young players cheap for long term and have 1 or 3 expensive. ‘Franchise Players’. It’s still good baseball. Old guys…over 32 years of age will have a harder time getting deals. It’s the big contracts of the past that failed thick have caused this….and it will affect the Hall of Fame as well.

  19. Travis 2 years ago

    Scott Boras needs to not
    talk about what small markets need. He is one of the great reasons for the
    haves and the have nots of baseball. Sure some small market teams create
    small mirages, but I contend that the worse thing for baseball is the
 in small windows of small market teams. 
The Twins for a short time,
    the Rays, Pirates, and possibly the Royals. This only promotes the argument
    that there is
 a balance of power in the MLB when in fact teams like the
    Yankees, Red Sox, and 
Dodgers can just reload as needed. A
 team like the Royals
    can’t miss on a prospect because all their money is spent 
in perceived weaker
    areas. They can’t 
afford to cover up mistakes. Baseball is
like having a
    basketball conference with Kansas, Kentucky, then throw in
 Wichita State,
    Depaul, and St. Johns. 
The latter three schools can occasionally compete, but
    only for a short
window, while Kansas and Kentucky will always compete.
    Baseball still needs to fix it’s problems
that were unsolved with the 1994
    strike with a high/low cap.

  20. daveineg 2 years ago

    Boras fails more often than you think. His client Carlos Gomez signed a 4 year $28.3 million dollar deal last year with the Brewers. He’d have gotten double that per year for 6 years if he were a FA this year. Boras likely wanted to make a big splash with Ellsbury a big market player, and sacrificed Gomez (strengthening the Ellsbury market) to do it knowing nobody would point that out.

  21. I’m not really desperate to find a failure of his though one might call the Lohse contract a failure and many would say the same about Bourn. You say they did fine, which is true. But did they set out to get a “fine” contract?

  22. Bob Bunker 2 years ago

    Very True, Thank you.

  23. John Donovan 2 years ago

    No I am not bellowing at conclusions I don’t understand. My bellowing is about excluding 50% of the data before starting the projections. I don’t have a projection model, because quite frankly I don’t believe they are useful at this time. Every Spring Training some teams are devastated by injuries to players expected to help during the season. For example, last year when the Brewers lost several first basemen for the year. Projecting the contenders right now is just busy work. It means nothing because firstly he is excluding half the data, including one playoff team last year, based on purely his guess of who will make the playoffs. Secondly, year long injuries play a very big part in who will be contenders and they just haven’t happened yet. Finally, I have taken 5 different college statistics classes, so I think I might understand it just a little better than you. However, that doesn’t mean I have to agree with it. Just because you disagree with something doesn’t mean you don’t understand it.

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