Scott Boras: The Smartest Guy In The Room

LeMaster DavisContributor IJuly 31, 2008

The Boston Red Sox didn't want to part ways with Manny Ramirez, at least in the short term.  Even with all the baggage that comes with Manny being Manny, Boston didn't want to relinquish their larger than life left fielder in the midst of a three team division chase.  The plan was to keep Manny and try to win their third World Series in five years.  It's too bad for the Red Sox they didn't have Scott Boras on their side.

Scott Boras made the Manny deal happen the moment he had the Tampa Bay Rays ready to deal for Jason Bay.  At that point, the Red Sox had to take a hard look at not only the utility of keeping Manny in the long run, but also the utility of keeping Manny in the short run.  What's better in the short run?  Keeping an unhappy Manny and letting Bay go to a contending division rival, or letting Manny go, grabbing Bay, and keeping the Rays from possibly getting over the hump?  

The decision makes sense for the Red Sox, but their hand was forced by Boras who is the agent for both Manny and Bay.  Boras masterfully played his cards and got the best result for not only himself, but also his clients.  Manny gets to leave Boston and play for a contender that has money to spend in a star studded town.  Jason Bay gets to play for one of the most storied franchises in baseball that has money to spend. Scott Boras gets to negotiate the next contracts for both players.

But, for Boras, this deal goes beyond Manny and Bay.  There are some real losers in this blockbuster, and, wherever there is a team that is going to lose, there is a Scott Boras who is going to win.  First, Bay would have been a huge addition to the Rays line-up. With the trade deadline passed, the Yankees have made a ton of moves, Boston is nearly as strong with Bay as they were with Manny, and the Rays have done nothing.  Second, the Arizona Diamondbacks just watched the Dodgers become the favorites in the NL West.