September 2, 2008

Poor Bob Webb Blamed Again, Alvarez, Boras And The Bucs

Poor Bob Webb Blamed Again:

Apparently Brewer's manager Ned Yost has pulled Ben Sheets' groin in protest to CC Sabathia not being credited with a no-hitter against the Pirates Sunday.  Nost, err, Yost apparently is blaming Bob Webb, Pirates official score keeper, for Yost's pulling of Sheets' groin.

"I started to notice it after the fourth," Yost said. "It wasn't getting tighter, but it was there a little bit."

Yost described it as "very, very slight" tightness.

"I'm not taking a chance of him pulling it," he said.

"He's one of our top pitchers," Yost said. "Do you wanna take a chance of losing him? I don't. I take no chances with starting pitchers this time of year."

Yost has always been considered a players manager.

BTW Take:

Ok, that is my poorest attempt at a Deadspin style post.  Ironically, all the above quotes, taken completely out of context, are from the linked story on Ben Sheets'  tight groin.


Alvarez, Boras And The Bucs:

The basic rundown of what has happened:

  • Alvarez agreed with the Pirates somewhere around midnight. 
  • The Pirates submit the acceptance. 
  • Boras was not involved in the acceptance. 
  • Boras cries foul to the MLBPA. 
  • The MLBPA files a grievance against the Commissioner's office for violating the CBA. 
  • The Royals get dragged in and their first round selection Eric Hosmer is pulled from his minor league team until after an arbitrator hears the case from the MLBPA.

We all know the sketchy details, but few know what the times were and if there was an extension.  The Pirates admit the acceptance was submitted sometime after midnight but the acceptance happened before midnight.

The hearing is September 10th.  A likely ruling may not happen until as late as after the World Series. 

The whole thing is sad.  And there is more blame to go around than the Pirates can lose games in a row.

Many point at Alvarez for allowing this to happen.  Simply by allowing his "advisor" to go to the MLBPA.  Although, I have a feeling Alvarez had very little to do with Boras crying foul.  Boras was likely on the phone as soon as he heard word of the acceptance.

Some point blame at Boras for causing such a stir when his clients are in jeopardy of losing $12+ million between the two of them.

Some place blame on the Pirates front office for allowing things to get down to the deadline.

Some blame the Commissioner's Office for blatant disregard of the CBA.

Some even blame the MLBPA for filing a grievance for player's they don't represent, although they are actually filing against the extension rather than the validity of the contracts.  If the extension is ruled a violation, the contracts could be voided.

In the end, the evil genius Scott Boras could win.  For years he has attempted to gain free agency for draft picks not signed.  He has found countless loopholes that have earned his clients millions and in turn has made him a power hungry and very rich man.  In turn, he has many clientele, past and present, that have some ties to him in the MLBPA.

Boras is playing the MLBPA against the Commissioner's Office in an attempt to line his own pockets.  Unfortunately for Hosmer and Alvarez, they are merely pawns in Boras' power trip.

One group I find curiously unnamed in the blame game is the NCAA.  What is the difference between a football player having contact with an agent and a baseball player having an agent as an advisor?  Alvarez could have returned to college with no questions asked if he did not agree to a contract.  Yet this "advisor" will get his percentage of the pie from Alvarez's contract without being his agent?

The NCAA should not allow this dog and pony show to happen.  If a player has an advisor, that is the same as having an agent and their eligibility should be terminated immediately.

Boras is a weasel, but a weasel that knows every loophole and every trick.  I doubt he goes through this for his clients good.  He goes through this for some sick demented pleasure he finds in making league and team brass squirm.  Oh and to line his own pockets.

What could the arbitrators ruling be?  Likely they will find in favor of the MLBPA.  Likely MLB will change a rule.  Likely the arbitrator will not void the contracts, they have no jurisdiction over minor league contracts only MLB and MLBPA issues.

What happens next is where it gets interesting.  Since the MLBPA can not represent Alvarez without an MLB contract, Boras will have one more card up his sleeve.  I would be willing to bet Boras will take on MLB with some frivolous lawsuit in an attempt to have a court rule his clients, err, advisees  deemed free agents.  Many believe Alvarez could get a deal around $20M on an open market.

I don't think this will go away for a long long time.  Don't get your hopes up on the September 10th date, nor when a ruling is announced.  Boras is gunning for an open market, and he won't stop until he gets his power trip filled.



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