While some speculated last autumn that the ill-advised leak of Alex Rodriguez’ opting out of his Yankee pact during the World Series would have negative repercussions for Scott Boras, the New York Times’ Michael S. Schmidt notes the agent has no shortage of high profile talent on display this postseason (“rather than upstaging the World Series this year, Boras could be casting it”), while also allowing Public Enemy No. 1 an opportunity to lobby on behalf of his 2nd most controversial client.
The theory among many in baseball is that Manny RamÃrez was acting out deliberately in the hope that the Red Sox would trade him, and that Boras went along, knowing that if a trade did occur, he could insist that RamÃrez become a free agent after the World Series. Indeed, the trade will allow RamÃrez to become a free agent, and Boras will collect a healthy commission on a new deal.
Sipping hot tea from a mug with his name on it, Boras zeroed in on July, when RamÃrez was still playing for Boston.
œEveryone said we went to Manny and said, ˜Don™t do things on the field that you would normally do,™ Boras said. œI can only say this when people raise that question: Manny hit .360 in July, led the team in home runs, R.B.I.™s, the whole thing. What is it that Manny wasn™t doing? I would like to be responsible for Manny hitting .360.
Actually, RamÃrez batted .347, not .360, and Kevin Youkilis, with 5 home runs and 20 runs batted in, slightly outdid RamÃrez™s 4 homers and 16 R.B.I. But the numbers were only part of Boras™s counterargument; he was also willing to take on the notion that RamÃrez wasn™t always running hard in Boston, wasn™t always trying.
œI™ve played the game a long time, Boras said, œand there are a lot of players that don™t run particularly hard a lot, and they are great hitters because they are trying to save their legs. I see it as a matter of practice that you would like to see him run hard, but the fact is they don™t want to wear him out and that™s the pace they play at.