27 Nov 2007
ESPN’s Rob Neyer had a semi-thorough review of agent Scott Boras’s big deals over the past 10 years. Neyer’s conclusion? Buyer beware. Read this quickly as it is an ESPN Insider article that is being made available for free for some reason.
Basically Neyer took the top Boras client signing over the past 10 years and looked at the player’s 2 seasons prior and seasons since the signing. It is 7 bad, 3 good. And ARod qualifies as a good signing, except that Neyer points out that the Texas Rangers (the deal Neyer reviewed for this study) was good from a statistical standpoint for ARod, but not for the Rangers as a team as they remained bad. And for whatever reason, they felt it a good idea to trade ARod and assume $51mm of his contract. Does that suggest anything?
Have the Yankees courted 10 years of mediocre play? Obviously each contract is different as is each player. But I’ll stick with my guns and say that when you pay a player so much more than the next guy, it causes problems. The Red Sox signing of Manny Ramirez 7 years ago might be the only exception. Why? Because Manny is a unique personality. I think it is dumb luck actually as Manny does anything he can to avoid the spotlight and attention usually afforded very rich sports types. Maybe I’m kidding myself.
ARod is going to make at least $27mm a year for the next 10 years and has incentives that will pay him, based on personal accomplishments, another $30mm or so. Scott Boras gets top dollar for his clients (I don’t know how much he was involved in this deal, but he already made ARod a ton previously) and while it makes the player rich, it usually makes the team regret. Usually.