Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Boras Being Boras

In today’s LA Times, the Creature from the Black Lagoon (aka Scott Boras) was quoted as saying this about the Manny dilemma, “I can’t put a timetable on this, but I know that spring training is a long time away,”

Um, I hate to be that jerk who breaks the bad news, but it’s actually not. I mean, maybe according to the Kabbalah calendar. But in baseball time, it’s in a couple of weeks.

Clearly Boras is trying to Jedi mind trick us into thinking that Manny isn’t screwed because he needs to divert our attention. From what? The fact that he’s the one who screwed him. How? By making Teixeira his real priority, by overestimating Manny’s market worth and by failing to encourage Manny to sign with the Dodgers—because that’s really the place where he belongs.

Manny’s options are dwindling away. The Giants won’t give him the years he wants, the Angels are supposedly not making anymore moves in the foreseeable future, and the Yankees plain old don’t need him. (Hallelujah.) As for the Mets, despite Jerry Manuel’s rumblings, I don’t see it happening.

The bottom line is that the Dodgers haven’t just given him his best offer. At the moment, they’ve given him his only offer. I’m no sports agent, but when the season’s rapidly approaching, and no one seems to want sign your client, don’t you advise him to take the only offer he’s been given? Especially when it involves $45 million?

But, like I said, I’m no sports agent.

Leaving aside the question of who wants Manny (the Dodgers) and who doesn’t (everyone else), the fact is that Manny makes sense as a Dodger. He needs to be the big fish, needs to play for fans who care more about big hits than running out the ground ball. In short, he needs a town so laid back that its residents are oblivious of the reality that there are few things in life more irritating than Manny being Manny.

So, Boras, I’d advise you to go to the Dodgers and give them a reasonable counteroffer—like one that’s basically the same as their original offer but just a little bit higher so that you fools can save face. But do it soon because their offer has already expired and who knows at what point they’re going to be too annoyed to give you the courtesy of saving face.

Or you could just go with the Andy Pettitte strategy and stand your ground until you get the Dodgers to give you half of what they had originally offered. That or wait for someone unhinged enough to give Manny a four-year contract.

It could happen. And the Cubs might also win a World Series again.

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