In his latest comments about Stephen Drew’s free agency and the draft pick compensation system, agent Scott Boras likened Drew’s free agency to being “in jail” and reiterated that he’s willing to wait until after the June draft to sign:
Dec 11, 2013; Orlando, FL, USA; MLB agent Scott Boras is interviewed during the MLB Winter Meetings at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort. Mandatory Credit: David Manning-USA TODAY Sports
"The system they’ve been dealt has basically prevented them from free agency. They want to make sure about their next step, whatever that will be. It means either signing a long-term contract now — and we’re still taking offers on those — or a number of other prospects that could occur after the season starts or in June, after the draft happens. Like any players, they want to play baseball. But they’re also looking at the long-term aspect of their careers. This system has placed them not in free agency, but it’s placed them in a jail."
Boras ignored the fact that Drew (and Kendrys Morales) both turned down qualifying offers of $14.1 million, and ignored the fact that neither of them is viewed as an elite player on either side of the ball.
Instead, Boras stated that the hand Drew and Morales were dealt offers “no escape,” and that the “integrity of the game” is at hand.
He went on to claim that many other free agents of “lesser performance” are getting compensated “dramatically more” because the stigma of a draft pick wasn’t attached to them.
Boras can get on his soapbox all he wants, and he can shout over and over about how the system is unfair. In a way, it is. However, for the millionth time, draft pick compensation isn’t preventing Drew and Morales from getting jobs. It may be a bit of a hindrance, but it’s not a roadblock.
The fact, is that neither Drew or Morales is in high demand, and neither Drew or Morales is an elite piece. If either were true, they’d be signed already.
Boras can wait for offers that likely won’t come – to the detriment of his clients. Or he can realize he screwed up by advising them to turn down qualifying offers, and work to get deals done for both of them before opening day instead of allowing his ego and arrogance to rule the process.