Sunday, February 14, 2010

Sunday Lightning 2.14.2010

  • And the point of this is what?

For some inexplicable reason, Angels first baseman Kendry Morales fired his prior representation, the Hendricks Brothers, and hired Scott Boras...while he's still under contract for $700,000 for 2010; isn't arbitration-eligible until next year; and won't be a free agent until 2013----ESPN Story.

What does he need Boras to do exactly? Get him out of Anaheim? Because that's all this hiring is going to do.

As has been stated numerous times, the Angels have no interest in playing Boras's game because they, as a club, don't have to play Boras's game. Certain clubs who haven't had the success of the Angels or are in desperate straits to retain or acquire players do have to deal with Boras----the Angels are not one of them. With most teams, the anger against a player agent lasts only as long as they can feasibly maintain said anger while putting a winning product on the field; with the Angels, it's different.

The club threw their hands up in the air at the duplicitous nature in which the Mark Teixeira negotiations went after they felt they'd met the demands to keep him, and saw the $160 million offer shopped around again so Boras could gain that extra $20 million from either the Yankees or Red Sox; and from the looks of things, they're maintaining the stance that they don't want to deal with Boras. This is the way they work with agents and players. They make a fair, competitive offer, expect an answer and move along if it's rejected.

What does Morales expect Boras to do when there's literally nothing to do? Any experienced agent can argue an arbitration case and they're always a flip of the coin as to who's going to win. The Angels are not going to deal with Boras in a long-term extension for Morales, so it's more likely that they'll keep the player as long as he's under the arbitration constraint, and let him walk after 2013. This hiring made no sense.

On another note, an interesting comment made by Boras shines a light into the increasing megalomania of the superagent. After being fired by Felipe Lopez, here's a clip from the above-linked story regarding Lopez:

Boras said he was given reasons by teams why they didn't offer Lopez a starting job, but he declined to mention them. Boras said Lopez was unhappy with the reasons and it was then when he decided to fire him as an agent.

"Once I get the information, I'm going to confront the player," Boras said.

Boras said he wished Lopez well.

Felipe Lopez would've gotten an offer of a starting job for a multitude of teams. At the very least, he would've received an offer of the job of a roving utility player who'd see action on a daily basis at various positions around the diamond a la Tony Phillips. The reason no one wanted to sign Lopez was because Boras's demands were probably so extravagant that it wasn't worth the aggravation or the money to try and sign him.

In addition to that, take a look at the comment from Boras: "Once I get the information, I'm going to confront the player." (Italics added.)

Confront the player?

Aside from a disgruntled employee wandering back into his former place of employment toting a gun and shooting at will, what does that exactly mean? He's going to "confront" the player? And do what? Is Scott Boras the all-seeing, all-powerful mob boss who demands an explanation when a player decides to make a business decision because he needs a job and such a job wasn't forthcoming with his prior representation? Because it appeared as if Boras was more concerned with saving face in the Johnny Damon negotiations than getting a deal for the lower echelon player like Lopez who should've gotten a contract by now?

Felipe Lopez was the employer.

Scott Boras was the employee.

Lopez made a change because he wants a job, as is his right.

I'd dearly love to see this confrontation, if Boras indeed does confront Lopez, because it's liable to be entertaining based on the out-of-control arrogance of Scott Boras who, contrary to his own bloated self-image, is not the puppetmaster for all of his clients as Lopez's gutsy decision to make a change proves.

  • Tim Lincecum avoids arbitration:

Even with back-to-back Cy Young Awards, there was no guarantee that Tim Lincecum was going to win his arbitration hearing with the Giants. The disparity between the Giants offer of $8 million and Lincecum's request for $13 million was so vast; Lincecum's desired leap from $650,000 to $13 million so massive, that I think he would've lost.

Lincecum signed a 2-year, $23 million deal which avoids arbitration for the next two years and gives the club time to prepare a long-term contract for the diminutive righty. There's been buzz that Lincecum cost himself money by taking this deal; of course any player who signs a long-term contract runs the risk of costing himself money; but he also guarantees himself a set salary no matter what happens.

If Albert Pujols wanted to, he could go year-to-year with a contract and, gambling on his health, make a lot more money than he would if he agreed to a long term deal. It would be admirable and gutsy for a player to do that, but why? Players want security, and Lincecum's deal puts any animosity that would've cropped up between the two parties in a contentious arbitration hearing on the backburner and makes a long-term deal possible without hurt feelings.

  • The argument against Frank Thomas for the Hall of Fame is what?

Frank Thomas hit 521 homers; drove in 1667 runs; scored 1494 runs; batted .301; had a career on base percentage of .419; a slugging percentage of .555; won two MVPs; finished second in the voting once; third twice; and fourth once; for a power hitter he rarely struck out; and he played clean in the era of PEDs.

The argument against Thomas for the Hall of Fame on the first ballot is what?

That he was a primary DH?


I've made this argument for the case of Edgar Martinez (which is far less certain that that of Thomas), but I'll make it again. Would it have been better for Thomas, with an eye on the future, to demand to play the field when it was better for the team to have him as the DH? Would it bolster his candidacy if he was standing at first base like a statue, run the risk of injury and hurt the team with his defense? Isn't it more of a team-oriented decision to accept his limitations and stay a DH for the good of the team rather than the good of a far-off future and enshrinement in the Hall of Fame?

Thomas was one of the most dangerous hitters in baseball for almost his entire career; his numbers are ridiculous. There is absolutely, positively no viable argument to be made against his induction. Not even the old-timers and buffoonish writers can keep a straight face with the insipid "I know a Hall of Famer when I see one" nonsense because if they look at Frank Thomas and don't see a Hall of Famer, then they're blind, drunk, stupid or all three.

  • Viewer Mail 2.14.2010:

Jeff (Street Boss) at Red State Blue State writes RE Felipe Lopez:

Lopez's new agency is the same group that manages Albert Pujols. As you mentioned, the Cardinals are rumored to have interest in him. They could use another experienced infielder to cover third and/or second if needed. But I'm not sure they'd offer more than $5 million as they're said to only have $6-7 million to work with.

It's so late in the game that he's going to have to take a short-term/short-money deal. The few teams with the money and the remaining hole aren't going to give Felipe Lopez anything more. The best he can hope for is a 1-year, $5 million or so base and some incentives based on performance and playing time. I have no issue at all with changing representation, but he should've done it in November before other players like Mark DeRosa signed. Now, no matter who his agent is, he's going to have to take whatever he can get.

Jane Heller at Confessions of a She-Fan writes RE the English language:

I had to re-read Neyer's headline too. It made my eyes cross.

In case anyone missed it, the headline Jane refers to is the following: Phil Hughes Works On Changes Needs Chance.

What would you say Jane? Clunky? Awkward? Bizarre? Or just plain bad? Making the reader's eyes cross is a bad thing 99.999999% of the time. I manage it on occasion, but only because what I've written is so orgasmic that they lose control, but that's me.


Jeff said...

Who's arguing against Frank Thomas as a HOF'er? People are against that?

Sounds like said people need a PoNY does of orgasm!!!

(Hahaha! That was a great line so I had to find a way to reference it.)

Jeff said...

"dose", not "does"... duh.