At these Winter Meetings, Super Agent Scott Boras represents the creme de la meh of an otherwise unimpressive free agent class. Sluggers Matt Holliday and Adrian Beltre, wealthy backup catcher Ivan Rodriguez, new Oriole Opening Day pitcher Kevin Millwood, and most importantly, latest Mariner whipping boy Corey Patterson are all Boras clients and have made news this week. Past Holliday and Beltre, there's not a ton of demand.
But does that increase or decrease his visibility and ability to make a scene? Just look at this video from Seattle beat blogger Geoff Baker:
You wouldn't see baseball writers and reporters get this a-tizzy over anything or anyone quite in the same way they hunt down Scott Boras for a bon mot. Well, unless Martha Stewart herself waltzed into the media room with a cardboard box full of In-N-Out burgers. Writers followed Boras through the Marriott lobby, up an staircase, and towards an open space on the second floor where more writers were waiting with gleeful anticipation.
Of course, Baker simply edited the video to show the vital Mariners bits in two quick minutes. But Boras held court for well over 30 minutes with a larger scrum than any other agent, manager, or hefty gadabout could procure. He's a star representing stars.
It doesn't matter what the economics of the day might be: Scott Boras is the alpha and omega of wheelings and dealings. In a bull market for players, he's driving salaries up and we want to read his quotes. In a bear market for players, he's still keeping salaries high and we still want to read his quotes. "How dare Boras demand so much money from those poor owners," we say and our intermediaries in the press get us our answers.
This year, Boras is selling Holliday as his number one client. Holliday is as good as Boras' big-time client from last year, Mark Teixeira, Boras claims. Holliday is better than Jason Bay, Holliday's main competition in the corner outfield market this year, Boras says. Holliday helped Albert Pujols be more Pujolian in the second half of '08, Boras states. I'd link my source here but there were so many columns and articles and tweets written about the topic that it makes my head spin trying to pick one out.
The Super Agent, he is ubiquitous. His thoughts and quotes encompass a hotel lobby and propagate out the door, through the ether, and into our collective consciousness. The writers are our go-betweens. They know who butters their toast. Boras is merely a part of a cycle of news that we desire and he'll continue to be first on everyone's dance card as long as he controls the information...and the best players in the biz.