Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Baseball Primer Newsblog > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

ESPN: Robinson Cano fires Scott Boras as his agent

There are tea leaves, and then there are tea fronds...

New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano, who is in line to become the most sought-after free agent next fall, has decided to change agents and walk away from Scott Boras, according to sources.

It remains to be seen whether this alters the trajectory of Canos talks with the Yankees, who have been trying to sign the star second baseman.

Esoteric Posted: April 02, 2013 at 10:40 AM | 52 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: new york, yankees

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: April 02, 2013 at 11:53 AM (#4401971)
He's joined Jay-Z's sports agency. I hope for Robinson's sake that Jay-Z is no Master P.
   2. The District Attorney Posted: April 02, 2013 at 12:01 PM (#4401979)
Looks like Jay is running an arm of Creative Artists Agency, so I assume they won't let him #### up.

It'll be interesting to see if Jay moves into basketball agenting, and thus has to give up his ownership stake in the Nets. He seemed to really enjoy getting himself out there as the public face of the team. But honestly, they have not set the city on fire, although it would of course be awfully early to jump ship.
   3. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: April 02, 2013 at 12:03 PM (#4401982)
Sounds like Cano will be re-signing with the Yankees then.
   4. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 12:09 PM (#4401992)
Sure, Arliss would listen if Cano called.
   5. JE (Jason) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 12:19 PM (#4402001)
Cano is gonna look great in a Nets uniform.
   6. Joey B.: posting for the kids of northeast Ohio Posted: April 02, 2013 at 12:20 PM (#4402003)
If this story had come out yesterday, I would totally have thought it was fake.
   7. Swedish Chef Posted: April 02, 2013 at 12:25 PM (#4402009)
Sounds like Cano will be re-signing with the Yankees then.

Maybe he's planning to cut a dubstep album and wants an agency that knows the music business.
   8. Tom (and his broom) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 12:34 PM (#4402017)
I wonder how much this is related to Lohse, and to the fact that Cano may be wanting to sign an extension before any suspensions come down.

Boras does a lot of things well, but urgency isn't one of them.
   9. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: April 02, 2013 at 01:08 PM (#4402042)
I wonder how much this is related to Lohse, and to the fact that Cano may be wanting to sign an extension before any suspensions come down.

Wouldn't the Yankees already know about an impending suspension?
   10. Avoid running at all times.-S. Paige Posted: April 02, 2013 at 01:09 PM (#4402045)
Any chance this means Cano will be playing baseball in Russia next year?
   11. The District Attorney Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:14 PM (#4402113)
Neyer points out that A-Rod and Tex fired Boras too, so this is three huge Yankee stars doing it. Dunno what it means, but it's interesting to note.

Neyer also speculates:
My guess... is that this is largely about Canó wanting to be more than a baseball player. He's one of the greatest baseball players on the planet, but what percentage of Americans have even heard of him? I don't know if there's anything that he or CAA or Jay-Z can do to change that -- aside from some scandal, I mean -- but when you're talented and wealthy, you tend to think you should be famous, too. And Scott Boras is better at making guys rich than famous.
And this did occur to me too, and it could well be what Cano is thinking... but I don't see Cano having sufficient zazz to pull it off. If you had told me in 2006 that a 23-year-old was about to become one of the best players in baseball on a very successful New York team, I would have said sure, that guy could become a household name. But he's had those advantages for seven years now and hasn't seen it happen yet, and the team is probably gonna be worse, so, I dunno. I also haven't seen any indications of him having any particular personality.
   12. Avoid running at all times.-S. Paige Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:19 PM (#4402116)
My lady friends tell me Cano is quite the looker. He also has a million-dollar smile. With Cano's talent and looks, I think Jay-Z could have him singing at half-time shows soon.
   13. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:24 PM (#4402125)
Jay-Z could also streamline Cano into his other endeavors, like his clothing line.

I assumed A-Rod fired Boras because his last big contract was signed, and from there on out he mostly needed PR management rather than an agent.
   14. SG Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:32 PM (#4402132)
Same with Teixeira I think.
   15. Gamingboy Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:33 PM (#4402134)
I do have to wonder though: Since Jay-Z is a noted and outright fan of the Yankees, does this make it, I dunno, a little ethically cloudy?

I mean, it's not like he owns a part of the Yankees like he does the Nets, but it seems sort of... weird.

Not like it matters, because Cano was going to sign with the Yankees if he was with ANYBODY other than Boras...
   16. Xander Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:38 PM (#4402140)
Any cloudier than Jered Weaver (under agent Scott Boras) re-signing at a fair rate with the Angels, the team Boras has season tickets for?

That is to say, no. I don't think it's a conflict of interest. LeBron was best friends with Jay-Z and had no problem saying no to the Nets when a better opportunity arose.
   17. Gamingboy Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:44 PM (#4402145)
That is to say, no. I don't think it's a conflict of interest. LeBron was best friends with Jay-Z and had no problem saying no to the Nets when a better opportunity arose.


True, true.
   18. Avoid running at all times.-S. Paige Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:54 PM (#4402159)
mean, it's not like he owns a part of the Yankees like he does the Nets, but it seems sort of... weird.


The Nets are part of the YES network, so this is perfect synergy in that rap-rock way anticipated by Steven Tyler and Rev Run so many years ago!
   19. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: April 02, 2013 at 02:57 PM (#4402160)
I assumed A-Rod fired Boras because his last big contract was signed, and from there on out he mostly needed PR management rather than an agent.

Does anyone have insight as to how agents get paid? I've assumed that they get a certain percentage of the contract. But they can't possibly get that all up front, for long contracts anyway. If the agent gets 10% and the guy signs a 10-year contract, the agent would get the entire first year salary up front. Or even more for an escalating contract. So that can't be it. Do they get paid 10% each year? So even though Boras is not A-Rod's agent any more he still gets paid every year.

In either case, though, it seems like you don't "have" an agent. You hire one for the contract negotiations and once the contract is signed, the guy gets his money no matter what. But if that's the case, then what did A-Rod "firing" Boras actually mean? Was Boras doing stuff for A-Rod? Do they have some sort of personal services agreement over and above the commission for negotiating baseball salary?
   20. Swedish Chef Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:05 PM (#4402170)
Does anyone have insight as to how agents get paid? I've assumed that they get a certain percentage of the contract. But they can't possibly get that all up front, for long contracts anyway. If the agent gets 10% and the guy signs a 10-year contract, the agent would get the entire first year salary up front. Or even more for an escalating contract. So that can't be it. Do they get paid 10% each year? So even though Boras is not A-Rod's agent any more he still gets paid every year.

Baseball agents doesn't get 10%, more like 3-5%. They get paid as the contract they negotiated gets paid out, much like other agents.
   21. Nasty Nate Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:07 PM (#4402172)
In either case, though, it seems like you don't "have" an agent. You hire one for the contract negotiations and once the contract is signed, the guy gets his money no matter what. But if that's the case, then what did A-Rod "firing" Boras actually mean? Was Boras doing stuff for A-Rod? Do they have some sort of personal services agreement over and above the commission for negotiating baseball salary?


Agents do more than negotiate contracts with teams. I think they also handle endorsement deals, offer financial consulting services, act as a liason to the team and league, offer miscellaneous legal services, etc...
   22. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:11 PM (#4402181)
I think they also handle endorsement deals, offer financial consulting services, act as a liason to the team and league, offer miscellaneous legal services, etc...

Are they usually on retainer for that sort of thing? Billing for services can be done hourly, I suppose, but press releases, communications with the team, etc. would probably require a steady payment. Does A-Rod pay more for the daily/weekly/monthly stuff than, say, Nunez?
   23. Nasty Nate Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:14 PM (#4402186)

Are they usually on retainer for that sort of thing? Billing for services can be done hourly, I suppose, but press releases, communications with the team, etc. would probably require a steady payment. Does A-Rod pay more for the daily/weekly/monthly stuff than, say, Nunez?


I'm not sure. I always assumed that the % of the contract that the agent receives covers most services provided. But I don't know.
   24. I am going to be Frank Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:22 PM (#4402194)
I wonder what the day-to-day activities of agents are. I guess finding endorsement deals and dealing with the team and league. I think most athletes have different deals with financial management.

BTW I used to love reading Neyer. I've read less than a handful of his articles (I think he's an editor but I assume he still writes) since he went to wherever he went to.
   25. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:24 PM (#4402198)
Me too. Thus the source of my confusion. Under that scenario, there's no point in firing Boras since he's "your" agent through the length of the contract.

By the same token, there's no direct financial incentive for Boras to do any of that stuff since he gets paid either way. Obviously there's the indirect incentive that if that's what you're expected to do, then you'd better do it or you won't get future business. But that's not my question.
   26. DA Baracus Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:28 PM (#4402204)
I wonder what the day-to-day activities of agents are. I guess finding endorsement deals and dealing with the team and league. I think most athletes have different deals with financial management.


Also "recruiting" amateur athletes about to be drafted.
   27. Swedish Chef Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:32 PM (#4402209)
By the same token, there's no direct financial incentive for Boras to do any of that stuff since he gets paid either way. Obviously there's the indirect incentive that if that's what you're expected to do, then you'd better do it or you won't get future business.

Boras sells himself to players in part based on all the services his firm offers (there have been a couple of articles about them here), so presumably those are enumerated in the contract with the player.
   28. boteman is not here 'til October Posted: April 02, 2013 at 03:46 PM (#4402230)
Jon Heyman was unavailable for comment.
   29. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: April 02, 2013 at 04:10 PM (#4402259)
Boras offers a lot of services for his clients. Legal, accounting, nutrition, fitness...the list goes on. However, I don't think he does very much (if anything) on the PR/marketing/endorsement side. If Jeff Weaver should do a commercial for Disneyland or something, I'm not sure how involved Boras's office would be.
   30. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: April 02, 2013 at 04:14 PM (#4402265)
Me too. Thus the source of my confusion. Under that scenario, there's no point in firing Boras since he's "your" agent through the length of the contract.

By the same token, there's no direct financial incentive for Boras to do any of that stuff since he gets paid either way. Obviously there's the indirect incentive that if that's what you're expected to do, then you'd better do it or you won't get future business. But that's not my question.


Cano fired Boras because he doesn't want him to negotiate the next deal - that's the point of firing him.

Agents work on commission - if they want to get paid then they find endorsements or other paying gigs for the athletes they are representing. I can't imagine an athlete paying his agent for any day-to-day activities, unless the agent is also acting as a financial investor or a PR rep, in which case there would be a separate contract between the agent/advisor/rep and athlete. What separates agents is the amount of coddling and favors they can do for the players. Jay-Z could be great in that sense, tickets to rap concerts, invites to parties, connections to other celebs, that is part of what he is selling to Cano.
   31. The District Attorney Posted: April 02, 2013 at 04:17 PM (#4402269)
If Jeff Weaver should do a commercial for Disneyland
"Hi. I'm Jeff Weaver. That's why I can assure you that Walt Disney World is the Jeff Weaver of amusement parks. You want to go to Disneyland, the Jered Weaver of amusement parks!"
   32. Dock Ellis on Acid Posted: April 02, 2013 at 04:18 PM (#4402270)
Well-played. I totally meant Jered.
   33. Greg Pope thinks the Cubs are reeking havoc Posted: April 02, 2013 at 04:19 PM (#4402273)
What separates agents is the amount of coddling and favors they can do for the players. Jay-Z could be great in that sense, tickets to rap concerts, invites to parties, connections to other celebs, that is part of what he is selling to Cano.

Again, then, why did A-Rod fire Boras after the contract was negotiated? After the contract is signed, Boras is either doing those things for free or he's not doing them. If he's doing them for free, then there was no reason for A-Rod to fire him. If he's not doing them, then he's not really his agent between negotiations anyway.
   34. Tripon Posted: April 02, 2013 at 04:27 PM (#4402286)
Disneyland is more like the Albert Pujols of Theme parks, old, needs help getting up in the morning, prone to striking out early in the season, but can't just assume he's just in a slump and an easy out.
   35. Enten Posted: April 02, 2013 at 05:46 PM (#4402402)
Again, then, why did A-Rod fire Boras after the contract was negotiated?


According to the Times piece Neyer links to, Rodriguez told Boras outright that he didn't wish to leave the Yankees, and Boras either talked him into it (Boras's side of the story) or went behind his back assuming Rodriguez would fall in line once the decision was made (the insistence of "people close to Rodriguez"). Rodriguez did go to the union at that time and filed to remove Boras as his agent, but that wasn't final until after Rodriguez and the Yankees agreed to the new deal.
   36. The District Attorney Posted: April 02, 2013 at 05:55 PM (#4402416)
Boras... went behind his back [and exercised the opt-out] assuming Rodriguez would fall in line once the decision was made (the insistence of "people close to Rodriguez").
I find this completely impossible to believe.
   37. Enten Posted: April 02, 2013 at 06:02 PM (#4402425)
I find this completely impossible to believe.


Yeah, the piece is really well-researched, so it stands out that there's nothing much in it to support that argument. My guess would be that Rodriguez said "no" (and possibly said "no" more than once), Boras did manage to talk him into it, and like many others have said in other situations, Rodriguez woke up a few mornings later and thought, a little too late, "what the hell did he talk me into? This has gotta stop."
   38. Nasty Nate Posted: April 02, 2013 at 06:09 PM (#4402433)
I finally just read that Times piece. I still don't understand the Yankees' side of the whole affair. The article repeatedly couches the reconciliation in terms of Rodriguez going back to the Yankees and apologizing, hat in hand. But then they gave him a contract that was waaaaaaaay better than the one he previously had. These two things don't reconcile.

If the Yankees understood that the market could give him a better deal, why was him opting out such an insult to them that it required apologies? And if it was such an insult, why were they so giving with his next contract?
   39. Nasty Nate Posted: April 02, 2013 at 06:13 PM (#4402440)
Rodriguez woke up a few mornings later and thought, a little too late, "what the hell did he talk me into? This has gotta stop."


To piggy-back on my #38, what Boras talked him into was perhaps the best financial decision he ever made, thanks to the Yankees inexplicably reversing course.
   40. ecwcat Posted: April 02, 2013 at 06:56 PM (#4402458)
The Master P comparison is unwarranted (Jay Z is just a front man).

I'm glad Cano is no longer with Boras (Satan).

Cano will get what he deserves with his extension, regardless of who is agent is. In fact, he doesn't even need one.

   41. Sleepy supports unauthorized rambling Posted: April 02, 2013 at 07:19 PM (#4402469)
I wonder what the day-to-day activities of agents are. I guess finding endorsement deals and dealing with the team and league. I think most athletes have different deals with financial management.


There's a very good book on this subject called "License to Deal", by Jerry Crasnick. It focuses on Matt Sosnick, and it dives pretty heavily into the day-to-day side of things. A lot of it is actually making sure prospects have things like gloves and shoes that fit, and a lot of it is just making the players feel special, "taken care of", since players can fire their agents any time they want and move to another agency.
   42. zenbitz Posted: April 02, 2013 at 07:33 PM (#4402480)
At this level of moolah, my working assumption is that Boras was fired by Cano/Arod/Tex et al because they could get another agent for cheaper. I am positive Boras gets the highest % of any agents.

Also nerd alert: I typed Boras name as "Boros". 30,000 quatloos to the nerd who gets the reference.
   43. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:00 PM (#4402512)
Agents do more than negotiate contracts with teams. I think they also handle endorsement deals, offer financial consulting services, act as a liason to the team and league, offer miscellaneous legal services, etc...


I imagine this depends on the agent. While you might want everything under one roof, I can see parceling out responsibility to various agencies, according to their specialties, or any prior ties the player might haven.

Probably some agents too that don't handle all the things you mention.

It does make sense to fire Boras after he's gotten you your first big deal. While 3 to 5% isn't going to kill you, is it possible you couldn't find a competent attorney to draft your next contract for 2%? If you're looking at a 200m deal the way Cano is, that saves you at least 4m dollars.

The downside is that a shark like Boras who's used to high end deals might well get you more than that 4m difference in attorney/agent fees. The new guy better be awfully good, or you'd better have an unusually good sense that you can only get 9/200, and not 9/205. How many players would know this?

Hmm. Maybe firing Boras isn't such a good idea after all...
   44. Random Transaction Generator Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:00 PM (#4402513)
Boros


Magic the Gathering?
Isn't there a deck in the online version (2013) that is called Boros?
(I've put 200+ hours into MTG:2013 online with my friends.)
   45. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:04 PM (#4402517)
The OuroBoros Worm?



Might be a little obscure.
   46. Steve Treder Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:09 PM (#4402528)
Steve Boros.

That's all I got.
   47. bobm Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:13 PM (#4402531)
There are 5 Boros: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx and Staten Island. 6 if you count South Florida.
   48. boteman is not here 'til October Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:26 PM (#4402544)
6 if you count South Florida.

Boy, that's the truth. I do 2-way communications work and half the time when the police talk on their radios down here it's like being in one of the 5 boroughs with those unmistakable accents.
   49. zenbitz Posted: April 02, 2013 at 08:33 PM (#4402550)
@44 gets the qualtoos. Its one of the 10 "ravinica" guilds. Red/White.
   50. Squash Posted: April 02, 2013 at 09:36 PM (#4402630)
Again, then, why did A-Rod fire Boras after the contract was negotiated?

I've alway thought a huge part of it was PR. ARod was getting destroyed in the media, so he sacrificed Boras (it's his fault!), who everybody already hated, to score some brownie points - and indeed when he did a lot of the fury was refocused. I briefly entertained the idea that firing Boras might have been Boras himself's idea - get the big contract, then repair your reputation by "firing" me. It's even something he could allow to be leaked to other clients - "look how far I'm willing to go for you". In the meantime everybody still gets paid.
   51. Sleepy supports unauthorized rambling Posted: April 02, 2013 at 09:38 PM (#4402632)
There are 5 Boros: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx and Staten Island. 6 if you count South Florida.

Also, Larry, who founded Viva el Birdos.
   52. jyjjy Posted: April 02, 2013 at 10:22 PM (#4402701)
I finally just read that Times piece. I still don't understand the Yankees' side of the whole affair. The article repeatedly couches the reconciliation in terms of Rodriguez going back to the Yankees and apologizing, hat in hand. But then they gave him a contract that was waaaaaaaay better than the one he previously had. These two things don't reconcile.

If the Yankees understood that the market could give him a better deal, why was him opting out such an insult to them that it required apologies? And if it was such an insult, why were they so giving with his next contract?

As a Yankees fan I the time I was bewildered as to how/why the Yankees caved so completely and suddenly when the circumstance seemed to call for the opposite. That very few other people, media and fans alike, asked these questions or seemed to care confused me even more.

BTW opting out was more than an insult as Texas was subsidizing a good chunk on the remaining years of his existing contract, which is why the Yankees were on record saying they would let him walk if he opted out. Also confusing to me were later reports that Texas still paid some on the new contract somehow.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
Darren
for his generous support.

Bookmarks

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogOT: Politics, September, 2014: ESPN honors Daily Worker sports editor Lester Rodney
(324 - 12:45am, Sep 03)
Last: greenback calls it soccer

NewsblogTrevor Hoffman's Hall of Fame induction seems inevitable
(84 - 12:44am, Sep 03)
Last: homerwannabee

NewsblogOMNICHATTER 9-2-2014
(67 - 12:40am, Sep 03)
Last: greenback calls it soccer

NewsblogPassan: 10 Degrees: Cole Hamels' trade value might be Phillies' lone bright spot
(7 - 12:23am, Sep 03)
Last: Crispix reaches boiling point with lackluster play

NewsblogPhoto of the day: Bill Murray, indy league ticket-taker
(128 - 12:21am, Sep 03)
Last: The District Attorney

NewsblogGleeman: Twins ask fans which brand of luxury car they are
(18 - 12:03am, Sep 03)
Last: The District Attorney

NewsblogExpanded Rosters Exacerbate Baseball’s Biggest Issue
(33 - 11:55pm, Sep 02)
Last: silhouetted by the sea

NewsblogThe indisputable selfishness of Derek Jeter
(39 - 11:38pm, Sep 02)
Last: Rob_Wood

NewsblogAdam Jones says he was joking about 'airport' comment at social media event
(24 - 11:28pm, Sep 02)
Last: DKDC

NewsblogRule change means more players to choose from for postseason roster
(15 - 11:10pm, Sep 02)
Last: Pirate Joe

Hall of MeritMost Meritorious Player: 1958 Discussion
(2 - 11:00pm, Sep 02)
Last: DL from MN

NewsblogAstros Fire Bo Porter
(62 - 10:50pm, Sep 02)
Last: ReggieThomasLives

NewsblogGiants to promote Brett Bochy
(2 - 10:24pm, Sep 02)
Last: JJ1986

NewsblogBrewers prospect plays every position, all in one game
(20 - 10:03pm, Sep 02)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogMets call up Dilson Herrera, have "talked about" d'Arnaud to LF
(52 - 10:01pm, Sep 02)
Last: The District Attorney

Page rendered in 0.2930 seconds
52 querie(s) executed