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Reyes Made Wise Decision to Avoid Boras

By Mike Silva ~ June 18th, 2011. Filed under: Mike Silva, New York Mets.

The 2011 season always appears to be two steps forward, one step back for the Mets. That was inevitable on the field, as most had them winning no more than 81 to 85 games. But Jose Reyes and his future with the team appeared to be on the right track with his play on the field, and the quote to WFAN’s Mike Francesa this week where he said he “loves living and playing in New York, and people know I want to stay here.” I was thinking the organization can craft a budget that includes Reyes as part of their future. Earlier today there is news that Reyes was flirting with Super Agent Scott Boras. Fortunately, for him, he decided to pass on his services. A Boras relationship is a cautionary marriage that will yield tons of money, but may result in control of one’s career and happiness put secondary.

Boras has lost some big name clients over the last few years. Locally, both Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez moved on from him. Teixeira said that “now that the contract is over with, I don’t want to be ‘Scott Boras client, I want to be Mark Teixeira, baseball player, helping this team win championships.” He learned that you sell quite a bit of your soul to be represented by Boras.

If there was anyone who suffered the cost of Boras’s riches, it was A-Rod, who fired Boras late last season. Instead of negotiating a deal after the 2000 season to bring him to his desired destination, the Mets, he followed “the money trail” and put Rodriguez in a “no win” situation with Texas. The team was financially hamstrung due to his 10 year/$252 million dollar deal. After three years of losing, A-Rod was sent to the Yankees, and put in a position where he can finally be a winner on the big stage. Postseason failures notwithstanding, Rodriguez almost blew it a few years later by opting out. I am not sure he would have been able to receive the same 10 years and $275 million the Steinbrenners wound up throwing at him. In fact, that opt out, which Brian Cashman warned against, could have put him in another unfavorable position. Lucky for Rodriguez, both Hank and Hal wanted to make their mark as the new decision makers of the Yankees.

The most cautionary tale of Boras’s penchant for overstepping his bounds as an agent is with Kenny Rogers. After a successful two year stint with Detroit where Rogers went to the World Series, and won 17 games in 2006, Boras elected to ignore his client’s wishes to remain there, and peddled his services to the highest bidder. Frustrated with the tone deaf nature of his relationship with his agent, Rogers fired Boras and negotiated a new contract for himself. He made sure to let his teammates know the situation, and warned them of what a possible business relationship with Boras involved. I even heard Barry Zito had some cognitive dissonance about hiring Boras in 2006, but his prior representation, Arn Tellum, would not take him back.

Obviously, there is plenty of Boras success stories right in front of Reyes. Carlos BeltranMike Pelfrey, and former Met Oliver Perez all benefited from a relationship with Boras. Of course, I wonder if Beltran ever considers how much easier his life would be if he re-upped with Houston. The Astros weren’t all that off from the Mets offer, and I bet he would have been appreciated much more by that fan base. With all the issues he had with Mets management over his health, I also wonder if he wouldn’t have lost as much time on the field. He could possibly be a healthier player today.

The money will be there for Jose Reyes regardless of representation. What agent will work for him? What agent will balance money with career happiness? What agent will put him in a situation where he can succeed long term? What agent will be there for him when he is looking for a deal at age 35? The answer to all of those questions is “not Scott Boras.” If the end game is the highest money, Scott Boras is his man. If the end game for Jose Reyes is getting a fair market value contract in a place where he can be happy and successful the next five to seven years, then he should stay far away from the Super Agent.  There are enough cautionary tales as a warning to what one will sell for the riches of Scott Boras. It appears Reyes got the memo.

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Mike Silva has hosted sports shows on 107.1 FM Champions ESPN Radio Long Island ,1240 AM WGBB , Blog Talk Radio and live from Mickey Mantle’s Restaurant. He’s also built and maintained two popular social media hubs: New York Baseball Digest and Sports Media Watchdog. Mike has broken national and local stories, as well as been mentioned on the YES Network, SNY.tv, WFAN, Sports Illustrated, ESPN, NY Daily News, New York Magazine, Journal News and the NY Post. Contact Mike professionally at mikesilvamedia.com

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8 Responses to Reyes Made Wise Decision to Avoid Boras

  1. Chakrabs

    I would love to have Reyes back on the team, and I do believe that the Mets can build around him even if he costs 20 mil per year, with proper development of the farm. However, I can also see why Reyes would be interested in signing with Boras. Boras can get top dollar for Reyes, and for Reyes, he may see no reason to re-sign with the Mets if they are truly in the financial doldrums such that his deserved contract will hamstring the team from competing. Its not like the Mets are going to win a championship anytime soon. Furthermore, for years, Reyes’ health has been badly mismanaged by the team, he has had his work-ethic and play questioned and criticized by the media and fans. Why not go to someplace where his talents will be appreciated at all times, and not just when he is performing at HOF level? After all, its hard to imagine he can keep up this pace all the time. And finally, if he’s so attached to being in New York and not moving his family, there’s a very rich perennially contending team a little further uptown that has a glaring hole at shortstop. It would leave a very bitter taste indeed in Mets fans mouths, but I have a hard time seeing why it wouldnt be in Reyes’ interests to not do so.

  2. Tom

    Players that want the most dollar, no matter what, sign with Boras. Those more interested in a balance usually hire someone else. Teixeira and A-Rod dumped Boras only after they had their long term deals in place – once you’re signed for big money through your late 30s or early 40s, there’s no reason to employ him any more.

  3. Stu B

    @Chakrabs: The Yankees don’t have a glaring hole at SS – they’re committed to Jeter for the next 3 years, and contracts like that mean they’re no closer to winning a championship than any other team, including the Mets…

  4. Steve S.

    I don’t get the A-Rod criticism of Boras. If anything, it proves that you could get a record setting contract AND still play where you want eventually. Not only that, he opted out and got even more money from the Yanks in 07. Win-win-win for Alex.

    If you want to criticize the deal for having to spend 3 losing years in Texas, it didn’t go badly for Alex on a career level. He had 3 of the best seasons of his career at a hitter’s ballpark, won an MVP trophy, and was an all star all 3 years. Plus getting paid more than anyone else in baseball.

    I think we make the mistake of looking at this from a fan’s perspective. For the athlete, baseball is their business. Great move, even in retrospect, for Alex. If I was him, I wouldn’t regret it.

  5. Dalers

    What player has ever not been happy with Boras?? Kenny Rogers made millions nd I’m sure he’s not unhappy with how it turned out

  6. spike

    The money will be there for Jose Reyes regardless of representation. What agent will work for him? What agent will balance money with career happiness? What agent will put him in a situation where he can succeed long term? What agent will be there for him when he is looking for a deal at age 35? The answer to all of those questions is “not Scott Boras.”

    This is so bereft of rationality and factuality as to defy description. “The money” may be there, but Boras is clearly very very good at maximizing this. Boras obviously “works” like hell for his clients – the marketing campaigns and data books and spinning up multiple offers where there would appear to be none speak volumes to the level of effort and skill Boras brings to the table. “Succeeding long term” is not his bailiwick, it’s up to the athlete and the franchise. He can’t know if team X is going to have a crappy draft, or what other personnel decisions are going to occur in Year Two of a contract. And NO agent is going to “be there” for the vast majority of 35 yo players. It’s like the author based all of this on the cliff notes to Jerry McGuire or something. Sheesh.

  7. Mike Silva


    You had to see that strapping Texas with A-Rod’s contract was not the best situation for him after 2000. I bet you give A-Rod a lie detector test and he admits his career might have gone different if he went to Shea.

    He would have been loved as a Met, and not have to deal with the petty jealousy of Jeter.

  8. spike

    Maybe YOU had to see that, but the Texas offer was far and away the best on the table. I can’t fathom why someone would question his taking it. In any event, he signed the deal, not Boras. No guns were pointed or anything. Unless you think Boras uses some kind of Vulcan mind meld or something. And who in their right minds would think they would have had a better career at pitcher friendly Shea over extremely hitter friendly Arlington? And why on earth would an inner circle HOFer who will earn roughly half a billion dollars playing baseball in salary alone wish his career had gone differently?

    And as far as “love” goes, the adulation he’s incurred at Yankee Stadium while putting up a .295/.392/.555 146OPS+ line, 2 MVPs, and a WS title makes me less than convinced there would have been any difference. Your brethren in the 4th estate have seen to that.

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