Sunday, June 19, 2011

Outside Interference

In the past I've compared Scott Boras to Bobby "The Brain" Heenan.

As the evil wrestling manager with a penchant for chicanery, Heenan was the dastardly villain behind the heel in the wrestling ring; Boras has taken the same role for his clients with his skill at wrangling every single penny out of desperate club owners.

Both are brilliant at what they do.

The concept of "outside interference" has several connotations. In the wrestling ring, it entailed Heenan hitting the opponents of one of his charges with a folding chair, distracting the referee or forcing a disqualification to hold onto a title.

With Boras it comes from commenters, analysts and observers who feel it's within their realm to advise players---like Jose Reyes---as to what they should and shouldn't do in terms of his career.

The presumption inherent with opining that Reyes should stay with his current agents or leave them for Boras is beyond the scope of arrogant. It's inexplicable.

Who or what gives them the insight, the knowledge, the audacity to say where a player should go; who should represent him; what his parameters should be in signing a contract?

After relentless stories and rumors that Reyes was "talking" to Boras, Reyes has chosen to stay with his longtime agent Peter Greenberg. It doesn't sound as if he ever had any intention of leaving; it sounds as if Boras wanted to plant the story---in a Heenan/Pro Wrestling Illustrated sort of way---to pressure Reyes.

Reyes would have had reasons to go with Boras; he had reasons to stay with the Greenbergs. He chose to stay with the Greenbergs.

Outsiders weighing in is perfectly acceptable in this era of everyone having a viewpoint and a forum to express it; in the time of instantaneous gratification via the internet, but in reality, it's no one's business but Reyes and those close to him.

Had he switched to Boras, he would have been roasted for being "greedy" and looking for dollars above all else. The same "experts" will either criticize Reyes for his lack of business savvy in staying with the Greenbergs or credit him for the perception of money being secondary.

Who knows what the truth is?

And more importantly, apart from insinuating yourself into the debate, what business is it of yours?


On another note regarding Reyes's decision to remain with the Greenbergs, the Mets now have a window of opportunity that they may or may not want.

Had he gone with Boras, there was no chance of the Mets keeping him. Since he's staying with his current representation, the impression of "money, money, money" isn't as prevalent.

If the Mets truly intend to let Reyes leave, then they're probably quietly unhappy that he didn't switch to Boras. Had he done that, the public may have turned away from the "keep Reyes" brigade.

With Boras, he was going to go wherever the dollar figure was highest. Period.

Mets GM Sandy Alderson is skillful at pulling the levers and greasing the political axles; had Reyes chosen to hire Boras, Alderson would have framed it as an excuse for his departure.

Blame Boras.

But Reyes didn't hire Boras.

If the Mets intend to make a competitive offer for Reyes---as opposed to a "show-me" offer to assuage the fans---the agent decision could play into a slightly lower price-tag to remain.

I get the idea he wants to stay.

Whether that translates into the team doing everything possible to make that happen will be made clearer as Alderson approaches the agents---the Greenbergs---with an offer, their response and how the leaks to the media are handled.

It could get messy.

Or it could be smoother than anyone anticipated.

We'll see.


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