Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
Boras Seizes the Moment
2007-10-20 23:09
by Cliff Corcoran

"I would say that state of flux is a grand issue. I'm not saying that information and time can not resolve it. But it's going to take time for us to know how these things are resolved. We're talking about a long-term contract here, and to make that decision is difficult, knowing there are that many issues up in the air." --Scott Boras

Alex Rodriguez's agent, Scott Boras, is good at his job, and he's seized upon the turmoil of the last few days to apply pressure to the Yankees not only to drive a dump truck full of money to Alex Rodriguez's front door, but to hire a manager, convince Andy Pettitte to come back, and send trucks of money to Mariano Rivera and Jorge Posada's houses as well. Sez Boras, "Without Pettitte, Rivera and Posada, it's not the same team."

Rivera and Posada seem determined to test free agency, but Rodriguez's deadline to opt out of his contract will arrive six days before free agents are allowed to sign with other teams (see sidebar), so something will have to give. That said, it seems a given that the Yankees will name a new skipper and pick up Bobby Abreu's $16-million option comfortably in advance of Rodriguez's opt-out date (for those doubting the Abreu move, Bobby hit .309/.396/.520 over the final four months of the season).

Meanwhile, Joe Torre has turned down an offer from FOX to join Joe Buck and Tim McCarver in the broadcast booth for this year's World Series citing family commitments. I assume those are commitments he made after the Yankees were eliminated from the postseason.

Comments (70)
Show/Hide Comments 1-50
2007-10-20 23:49:32
1.   nick
wow, stuff got crazy in that last thread!...luckily nobody has strong feelings about Boras so things should stay mellow this time around--
2007-10-21 00:23:03
2.   rilkefan
Why is it that I didn't have the impression that Abreu was OPSing .900, even though I knew that's what the numbers said?
2007-10-21 03:36:31
3.   unmoderated
Abreu snuck up us this year - I can't believe his run totals.
2007-10-21 05:30:41
4.   ms october
Um, his family "committments" are probably cleaning out the garage- one I would use too to avoid having to be stuck with Buck and McCarver.

" something will have to give"
Indeed. I guess we can say at least we will have a busy off season.

And in other news, supposedly Byrd's double wind-up isn't the only PED he used.

2007-10-21 06:03:54
5.   Sliced Bread
What a shocker that Joe, at this moment in his life, would turn down the opportunity not only to be questioned by the great Joe Buck, but also to promote the exciting, all-new seasons of "24" and "American Idol" on FOX. Heck, he's also blowing the chance to maybe meet Dane Cook.
Silly unmotivated Joe, every other manager in the game would jump at this, no?
Um, no.

Yay. Now comes the point when we happy citizens of Fluxville get to watch Boras rope-a-doping the dipshits who now run the Yanks. Somebody stop the fight already. It's not even fair.

Boras has wanted nothing more than to bring Rodriguez to market, you know, to motivate the lean mean 2008-> "performance based!"(tradmark) Yankees, and Team Genius in Tampa has kicked the door open for him.

2007-10-21 06:05:06
6.   OldYanksFan
1 You're not gonna start talking trash about Boras, are you?
2007-10-21 06:06:12
7.   Chyll Will
2 ,3 I'm guessing that Abreu was pretty much OPSing on himself, so with that in mind the run totals are not at all surprising. Manny could learn a lot from him about that kind of discretion >;)
2007-10-21 06:10:06
8.   OldYanksFan
4 Wow... I ain't a court of law, but $24k in juice and $1k in syringes? 2 prescriptions from a Florida 'Dentist'? Doing this for 2 1/2 years? Am I reading this right? Does this sound like pretty damning news?
Hey, pornography is cool, but this?
I wonder if all this happen before he was 'Born Again'...
2007-10-21 06:11:09
9.   Sliced Bread
5 Boras was going to have Alex opt-out regardless, mind you, but Team Genius ushered him to the exit, and gave Team Boras the perfect excuse to walk out that door.
"Too much flux for Alex at this time, you $ee." (this is Boras talking now) "Alex craves $tability, and all that."

Ain't this boogie a mess.

2007-10-21 06:16:00
10.   OldYanksFan
I don't know if this has anything to do with anything that has happened, but I read an article that said Torre could make $5m EASY this year. I guess Joe is highly in demand in many circles.

It sounds like if Joe wanted to put in the hours he would typically have put in as manager, he could blow $5m away easy. I guess it really WASN'T just about the money.

2007-10-21 06:18:49
11.   Chyll Will
5 So whom do we nominate as the Flux Capacitor?

4 "I'm sorry, but I love my family too much to subject them to the image of me sitting between Tweedle-Dee and Tweedle-Dum on your channel" (whistling as he carries trashbags full of lineup cards and used teabags to the curb) ...

2007-10-21 06:20:12
12.   OldYanksFan
9 I have this pitcture in my mind of a giant machinery plant, filled with huge vats of glowing green fluid, and sparks are flying all over the place, with a desk in the corner, that has a big red button in a plastic case.... and Levine is standing over it saying "I wonder what would happen if I press that button?"
2007-10-21 06:21:11
13.   Raf
8 Maybe, maybe not, but if MLB didn't HGH at the time, they're open game.
2007-10-21 06:24:23
14.   Chyll Will
8 (let's kinda not kick at that wasp nest anymore, um-kay?) >;)
2007-10-21 06:24:31
15.   Sliced Bread
11 No question Hank is the Biff in our new "Yankees: Back To The Future" mythology.
Hey, since it's the 80's all over again let's get Huey Lewis (sp?) to write the new Yankee soundtrack.

12 The Countdown To Ka-blooey! is on.

2007-10-21 06:31:04
16.   Chyll Will
13 Yeah, and if BB ddnt rsn as HC of the NYJ, ths wld mk absltly no sns whtsvr, rt?
2007-10-21 06:34:15
17.   Chyll Will
15 Hank to Torre: "Now why don't you make like a tree and get outta here..." Yep, that makes absolutely perfect sense.

So does Huey Lewis... "They say the heart of Rock & Roll is forbidden, and from what I've seen I believe 'em..."

2007-10-21 06:39:08
18.   Raf
16 I should really hire a proofreader... And strangely enough, that does make sense.

10 There are only so many banquets to speak, there are only so many books to write... I guess he could clear that $$ as a consultant/motivational speaker? Clemens came to my job a couple of months ago, I have no idea how much it cost to bring him there...

2007-10-21 07:00:29
19.   Sliced Bread
17 Hilarious how Hank is now spinning that he genuinely wanted Joe to accept the offer.

Heh. I imagine a smart businessman like him wants Alex Rodriguez to return for a cut in pay, and performance-based postseason incentives?

Of course that's what you want, Hank, but perhaps for the first time in your life, you're not going to get what you want.

2007-10-21 07:06:09
20.   Chyll Will
15 "Hamster Huey & the Gooey Kablooey" starring R. Levine as the latter. I could totally see that! Now all we need is Bama with a quick visual...
2007-10-21 07:07:11
21.   Sliced Bread
Secondhand smoke.
I'm sorry Hank is so upset that Joe didn't accept the offer.

Sliced gently puts his arm on Hank's shoulder (Joe Torre style).

"Nothing lasts forever. Right, big fella?"

2007-10-21 07:15:11
22.   Chyll Will
19 Do you also detect a pattern of paternal abuse or neglect in the family tree? Torre said about George, "you knew that he was proud of you, but he would never bring himself to say it" or something along those lines. I remember reading an in-depth article about George himself where he said the same exact thing about his own father. If that's true, this does not bode well at all for the Yanks in the near future, unless they actually do decide to sell after the old man is gone.

Boys, learn your history and break the chain; free your mind and yo'ass will follow!!!

2007-10-21 07:23:31
23.   ms october
I haven't seen this mentioned over the last few days (sorry if it was and I overlooked it), but the Yankees are mad that ESPN aired the conference call on Thursday - hmm, I wonder why?

Also, are there performance incentives tied to having the new Yankee stadium completed on time - if so, you might want to check into that Mr. Levine.

And since this is a Boras thread - at this point - who are the really legitimate players for ARod?. The Angles seem to be out; the Cubs ownership situation is probably too murky.
Any sleeper teams? - I keep hearing the Phillies will be players with Mo, I wonder if they would make a run at ARod, plus, at that ballpark ARod should be able to amass a bunch of HRs.

2007-10-21 07:30:40
24.   Raf
23 FWIW, the last two contracts I didn't see coming were Rodriguez signing with the Rangers, and Clemens signing with the Jays.
2007-10-21 07:36:02
25.   Sliced Bread
22 Heh. Love that "free your mind" bit there, Chyll.

Not sure about the parental abuse/neglect thing, but there's an undeniable divorce pattern going on in the "dirty sexy money" Steinbrenner clan. Everybody has their reasons, of course.

Now, lest I be accused of parental neglect I'm off to a fall festival with the wife and kids: apples, pumpkins, cider, crafts that one ought not purchase but will, and all that.

It is, after all, a gorgeous autumn day in Fluxville. Have a great one, all.

2007-10-21 07:45:37
26.   joejoejoe
For anyone interested in reading more about Randy Levine (i.e., masochists) the blog 'Field of Schemes' by Village Voice* writer Neil deMause has a lot of good stuff in the archives. 'Field of Schemes' is devoted to to chronicling the various public stadium deals in sports and there is A LOT of stuff in old posts regarding the new Yankee Stadium deal chronicling Randy Levine's dealings with the NYC and the State of NY. Levine rode the stadium deal to power in the NYY front office and his dealings on that front make his negotiation with Joe Torre look like a model of trust and respect.

*your paper isn't as good without Emma Span

2007-10-21 07:45:52
27.   Sliced Bread
24 excellent point, though this time Boras seems to be dropping hints. Rodriguez seems to be headed where he will be greatly valued not-as-much as a ballplayer as a TV star.
The list isn't that big, but there are several obvious possibilities.
Becoming a TV star was what brought him to Texas, right?

Now, I'm off to the pumpkins for reals.

2007-10-21 07:57:59
28.   Chyll Will
25 Just for the record, I said paternal, implying a trait with the Steinbrenner men; have no idea if the parental units as a whole are problematic, but there is reportedly father-son issues in three generations of the family; by natural tendency this reflects in the things they involve themselves in. George talked about how he tried very hard to please his father, but his father almost never reciprocated. That would explain a whole lot in his own behavior towards his employees, minions and his sons.

I just hope that it ends with him and that neither Hank or Hal continue the pattern of passive-aggressiveness, but with Hank it seems so far it will. Hoping that even at age 50, he can learn something from his father's history and change course from where he stands now.

But on a day like today, why spoil a good mood? I'm going outside and soaking up some nature. Have fun with the munchkins, SB and everyone have a good time! >;)

2007-10-21 08:12:39
29.   yankz
Isn't HGH legal with a prescription anyway?

Also, if dudes like PAUL BYRD were juicing, who wasn't??? I'm freaking out about "The List."

2007-10-21 08:18:28
30.   yankz

"Report: Hank Steinbrenner fires back at Torre"

2007-10-21 08:19:54
31.   yankz
If anybody has ESPN insider (why?!?!), Gammons has written an article called "Yankees will survive":
2007-10-21 08:25:10
32.   JL25and3
9 And I see it the other way around. I think he's trying to get the Yankees to bid against themselves, but when all is said and done, I think Alex re-signs with NY.

If the intention was to opt out no matter what, then why make this statement at all? It's a statement that matters only to the Yankees, and only before he opts out. Why make any of the statements he's made in the last couple of weeks? It has to be intended entirely for the Yankees' benefit; otherwise he could start making these arguments later, when the papers are starved for baseball news.

As others have pointed out, there may not be that much of a market for Alex. Boston? Maybe Philadelphia, maybe SF? Maybe the Angels are interested after all? That's not much to choose from, and no guarantee of topping any offer the Yankees make.

2007-10-21 08:42:13
33.   joejoejoe
32 As fearsome as it would be to have A-Rod (age 32) playing for Boston in Fenway the lineup wouldn't be so unreal as you think. Ortiz has started having the leg problems that all players his size seem to get on the back half of their career and Manny (age 35) has a $20 million team option in '09 that isn't likely to be picked up. I could see Manny at DH in pinstripes on a series of monster one year deals. Boston would have a monster lineup for one year and then the same aging roster problems that have plagued the Yankees.

Manny career .313/.409/.593 vs. ARod career .306/.389/.578

2007-10-21 08:54:50
34.   Andre
17 you do know it's "heart of rock n roll is still beatin" right?
2007-10-21 09:18:13
35.   ms october
24 Yeah, those 2 seemed to come out of left field.

25 Yes loved the free your mind 22 - but if we are going back to the 80s drama15 , just remember the Bronx keeps creatin it.

29 Yes - it's legal with a prescription. But my understanding is it is (supposed to be) only prescribed in very limited circumstances.
I wonder if the flip side of your Byrd statement is that it is a lot of the fringe guys that are using it to stay in the league?
I just hope KF is the only Yankee name on the almighty list.

32 Agreed - he is trying to get the Yanks to put their best and highest on the table right away. As people who have speculated about cashman's stance have pointed out - he will opt-out if he has a deal in place a la JD Drew.

2007-10-21 09:40:43
36.   yankz
I just absolutely cannot see Arod going to Boston. They'd have to blow the Yankees out of the water, 2-3 million per year IMO. They hate him there, and he knows it.
2007-10-21 09:43:24
37.   yankz
There are several LoHud commenters who think Santana for Wang straight up is a reasonable deal. I'm embarassed.
2007-10-21 10:04:58
38.   ms october
37 I haven't been able to read those comments in the last few weeks - they give me a headache or something.
That is embarassing.
But the deal we discussed yesterday of Santana for Wang, IPK, and Melky is starting to seem too much, I don't know.
2007-10-21 10:05:49
39.   Zack
Byrd claims that he has a pituitary tumor and is taking it with doctor care. If thats the case, and MLB knows about it, they should come out immediately and say so. They won't, b/c they're incompetent. Considering that they are holding the Mitchell report until after the playoffs, it is somewhat suspicious that this report surfaces now, right at game 7, a game Byrd might have to come in and pitch in.

And as for hank "firing" back at Torre, I don't see anything in there that isn't a decent point, and if Joe can "fire" at the Yanks, they can certainly "fire" back, not that anything in there is at all an attack...

2007-10-21 10:17:37
40.   ms october
Is the only place to get HGH from these "specialty" type clinics?
Can you get it from some chain pharmacy like CVS?
It is the mail order aspect that contributes to the suspiciousness.
2007-10-21 10:23:11
41.   Max
39 Honestly, I don't want to bring up any more dead horses...I want to move on with what's next for the Yankees (and pray the RS lose somehow tonight or in the next week)...but no matter what the decent points of the other side, it's a losing PR battle. Hank sounds petty saying such things now. The other side seems to completely not understand Joe's image and what he means to the city, no matter what the merits of his not being rehired are.

Better to let things cool off, take a few lumps, then move on with the next manager and give him the full support. Really, if management believes they're right, then shut up and just quietly go about building the best team for next year.

2007-10-21 10:33:21
42.   yankz
41 I don't really mind if he has his dad's bark, as long as he spends like him too.
2007-10-21 10:51:50
43.   Zack
42 Exactly. While I would much prefer him to spend money and NOT really be involved, that might be too much to ask. I don't have a problem with a blustery boss, as long as the decisions are still left up to the gm, which remains to be seen...
2007-10-21 11:00:35
44.   Sarasota
41 Hank sounding petty is a huge understatement
2007-10-21 12:14:34
45.   fgasparini
Seriously, who would the bidders for A-Rod be?

Angels have said no.
Dodgers won't spend and are committing (theoretically) to the kids.
The Cubs spent big recently, are about to be sold.
The White Sox? I guess they could afford it.
The Red Sox. They can afford it and have a need at third. A-Rod seems to match up well with Fenway. But will they spend so big, and will they want him in Boston? I don't know if they take the fans into account but they really hate him up there.

Anyway, the bidding war would be between--the White Sox and Red Sox???

I don't think Philly will spend, they're always poormouthing. SF needs to rebuild.

I'm sure there are many things going on we don't know, but the best play for A-Rod and Boras might well be to re-sign.

2007-10-21 12:19:26
46.   fgasparini
Interesting crumb from LoHud:

"If Rodriguez returns to the Yankees, it will be as a true team leader. He is far more of a mentor to the younger players than Jeter"

Not sure what to make of that--never heard anything like it before.

2007-10-21 12:32:09
47.   yankz
46 I have, and who really cares? I don't think Jeter is losing sleep over the fact that Melky and Cano don't do a little jig around him.

Also, too much goes on behind closed doors that we don't know about. I know I read once that Jeter talked to Cano after the youngster messed up with the press.

What I'm trying to say is- why can't they both be mentors, and I'm sure they both are?

2007-10-21 12:34:39
48.   fgasparini
"who really cares?"

Maybe A-Rod. Possibly may be one factor of many that influences his decision making.

2007-10-21 13:11:50
49.   yankz
It's one thing to bash Torre. It's another to be idiots about it, like NoMaas. The one thing Torre did very well was give credit to his players and coaches.
2007-10-21 13:30:09
50.   steveb1234
39 , MLB didn't leak the info about Byrd; it was a newspaper. The paper had been sitting on the info for a while.

As for the timing, it has everything to do with being a Sunday (bigger sales for the biggest issue), and this being the only time of the year anyone cares about anything related to Paul Byrd.

Show/Hide Comments 51-100
2007-10-21 14:04:40
51.   Simone
39 Wealthy people who have prescriptions for drugs do not buy them over the Internet. One of Byrd's prescriptions came from a dentist, goodness sake. I can't believe that people still buy the BS stories that these athletes make up for using PEDs.
2007-10-21 14:09:08
52.   Simone
46 I'm pretty sure that Alex Rodriguez leaves, Melky and Robby would be just fine. "True team leader" is that mean that Alex is finally a "true Yankee?" Ugh. If that is Pete Abraham, I wish he would stop making up more leverage for Boras.
2007-10-21 14:20:35
53.   brockdc
37 , 38 : Judging from the typical responses Pete gets, I'd say that about 90 percent of his readership is clinically insane. But it's still fun to read, nonetheless. I especially like when readers adopt the title of their manifesto as their username, i.e., "FIRETORRENOW ITS NOT WORKING!!!!111!" or "WANGFORSANTANA STRAIGHTUP - BANK ON IT!"

They're literally insane, and Peter knows it: In today's post, he actually suggests they go outside and get some air!

2007-10-21 14:21:02
54.   JL25and3
To shift gears: if I were Eric Wedge, I would have thought seriously about starting Byrd tonight instead of Westbrook.

Six of one, half dozen of the other, I suppose.

2007-10-21 14:21:53
55.   fgasparini
"I'm pretty sure that Alex Rodriguez leaves, Melky and Robby would be just fine. "


I was wondering whether, if A-Rod is doing some mentoring, and feels attached to those guys, maybe that's something that would help tip the scales in favor of doing an extension instead of opting out.

2007-10-21 14:24:56
56.   fgasparini
The people who post at LoHud are stupid, but Pete is good.

I often disagree with his take on things, but the facts he reports are usually correct.

2007-10-21 14:30:34
57.   Raf
55 I would doubt it. If that were the case, it wouldn't have gotten to this point, and there'd be no talk of Alex opting out, and they wouldn't be talking extension for another couple of years.
2007-10-21 14:32:12
58.   yankz
I agree fully with 56 .

If Alex leaves, I hope Robbie and Melky stick to his workout regimen. I believe they've been tailing and emulating him in the gym.

53 HA! I agree- their handles are just awesome. Reason enough to wade through that mess a few times a week.

2007-10-21 14:39:36
59.   ms october
53 I saw that - it must be entertainment to him too.
In addition to their name as argument - I enjoy that they are trying to win an argument by repeatedly yelling but in post form.

54 Are you serious - why?

55 I get what you are saying - I am not sure about tipping the balance, but it does seem he likes the role of being one of the leaders as opposed to being on an island.
Not to get all Dr. Phil sappy, but I think that is something that has been hard for some guys like Giambi when they come to the Yanks and don't really have anywhere close to the role they had on their previous team.

It's funny how happy Troy Aikman sounds without Joe Buck.

2007-10-21 14:44:25
60.   JL25and3
59 Looking over their season (and career) stats, there's not all that much difference between the two of them. Byrd strikes me as more able to adjust, better able to ignore Fenway, and less likely to melt down.
2007-10-21 14:52:01
61.   ms october
60 Yeah - could be - "stuff" wise they are a wash. I would have thought the same thing about Byrd being "tougher" as well, but Fenway would be merciless about the HGH thing - not sure how well he would handle that - of course it could work in reverse as well. But we are probably graplling for something.
2007-10-21 15:00:09
62.   JL25and3
61 Yeah, overall I'd say the keys for the Indians are:

1. Get to Matsuzaka, and
2. Manny up with no one on base.

Speaking of which, I'm now hearing him referred to as "Man-Ram." I've spoken before about the plague that began with A-Rod: F-Rod, I-Rod, K-Rod, Dice-K and others that (thankfully) I can't think of right now. This has to stop. Please. Think of the children.

2007-10-21 15:02:48
63.   OldYanksFan
18 The article I read said Torre is good for $100,000 per speech. There are a lot of colleges and corporations out there. But public speaking was just 1 of many ways Torre could make money.
2007-10-21 15:08:54
64.   ms october
62 Very true - especially point 1. While I agree with point 2 as well, they also can't let the 2nd tier hitters like Drew and Youkilis beat them again.
Yes, I think we have a few diehards at Sportcenter to thank for this. It should have gotten old by now.
2007-10-21 15:08:55
65.   bbfan1
"Speaking of which, I'm now hearing him referred to as "Man-Ram.""

He's been called that for ages. Nothing new, and older than most of the names you mentioned by quite a bit.

2007-10-21 15:12:06
66.   OldYanksFan
23 Well Missy, ya never know. But $300m is silly money to every team including the Yankees. My guess is the only real competition to the Yankees is the Red Sox. Lucchino took it personal when we got ARod and he DIDN'T (HA!) Aside from ARods obvious value to the Sox, getting ARod from us would be the closest they could come to retribution for giving away the Babe.

Imagine how it would play everytime the Yanks faced the Sox. Ten years from now, we would still he hearing it on every national brodcast. You think you hear about 2004 too much? That's nothing compared to every hit he gets against the Yankees... or every walkoff.. or (God forbid) PS game win.

Frankly, to me, it's a nightmare in the EXTREME!

2007-10-21 15:25:49
67.   OldYanksFan
Just read the 'Hank' article. Sounded to me like a little kid whining. I wonder how much more the Yankee conglomerate is worth now then 12 years ago. Torre's popularity and the Yankees winning couldn't have hurt. Did Joe get his cut?
2007-10-21 16:02:11
68.   JL25and3
65 Which only makes the cause even more urgent.
2007-10-21 20:55:03
69.   NC Highlander
I don't blame Torre. Would you want to comment beside Joe Buck and Tim McCarver to talk about the Red Sox? To hear them talk about that idiot papeljigdancer.


2007-10-22 07:30:49
70.   Schteeve
Boras is 100% right. If Rivera, Posada, Pettitte and Abreu aren't back next year, it's a very different team, and if I were A-Rod I might not want to come back with so many question marks.

Even the biggest Boras basher has to see that it changes the equation significantly.

If the Yankees are smart, they will name a manager this week.

They will also call Alex and tell him that they are prepared to do whatever it takes to keep Posada. This is a must in my opinion, as there are no viable, congruous, replacements anywhere at any level.

As for Rivera. Great Yankee. First ballot HOF. One of the most amazing athletes I've ever seen. To do what he's done for so long. So steadily. To kill ML hitters when they pretty much know what's coming and yet can't do a damn thing about it. The guy is probably a once in a lifetime phenomenon.

That said, I believe the importance of Rivera, and all closers for that matter is overstated. If they can't get a deal done for him, I'm not going to shed too many tears about it.

In order of importance, here are the guys the Yankees NEED to bring back next year.


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