Jose Julio Ruiz's recent change in agents, from Jorge Luis Toca to Legacy Sports, appears to have been far from amicable. Both Ruiz and Toca lobbed barbs yesterday through the Nuevo Herald's Luis Rangel (link in Spanish).
Among the claims: Toca says the Red Sox offered $2.5MM for Ruiz, but adds the team later withdrew their offer after seeing Ruiz "out of shape and overweight" last Monday. He also says Ruiz showed up for tryouts without a glove, leading some on the Boston side to conclude the Cuban prospect had "a bad character."
According to the agent, the Rangers offered $2MM to Ruiz and the Blue Jays offered $1.5MM, even though Ruiz's tryouts in front of scouts were disastrous, with the first baseman only managing 10 or 12 hits in over 100 ABs. Toca says he was negotiating with Tampa Bay last Thursday when Ruiz called him and announced the split because "he could not stand it anymore." He says he is planning legal action against the player for expenses, claiming Ruiz used his agency to get information about teams and money to give to other agents.
Ruiz replies that far from being out of shape, he was "better than ever" in recent workouts for Texas and Toronto. In regards to the Red Sox, he says he "could not do anything" during the workout because of a hangnail on his ring finger. He claims not to know where Toca's "10 or 12 hits" figure comes from, as he never staged any official tryouts. Ruiz insists his value fell on the market because of Toca's agency communicating poorly and "not doing their job," saying, "I believe if I had been with other people, I would have signed long before."