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Scott Boras is trying to drum up interest in Jose Valverde

Jan 21, 2013, 5:57 PM EDT

Jose Valverde Getty Images

Now that he’s found a taker for Rafael Soriano on a heavily deferred deal, Scott Boras is trying to get teams interested in ex-Tigers closer Jose Valverde.

Valverde, 34, was 49-for-49 saving games for the Tigers in 2011 and 35-for-40 last season, but the postseason meltdown that saw him give up nine runs in 2 2/3 innings, combined with some declining peripherals from the regular season, has scared away seemingly every team this winter.

Boras knows he can’t use words to sweep away Valverde’s October struggles, but he does cite workload and fatigue as a possible reason for the sudden swoon. Counting the postseason, Valverde appeared in 81 games in 2011 and 75 last season.

“Closers normally have anywhere from 58 to 62 appearances and Valverde’s just had two years where he was used a lot,” Boras told George Sipple of the Detroit Free Press. “It was a very unusual year this year, because he had so many non-save situations. He had like 31 of them, which normally they only have 17 or 18. So, it was a very unusual year.”

Those non-save situations are another thing working against Valverde this winter. He has a history  of struggling without a save on the line, so contenders aren’t looking at him as a potential setup man.

Realistically, Valverde is going to have to settle for a cheap one-year deal with a chance to rebuild his value. If he’s willing to sign for $2 million or so, then maybe the Mets, Astros, Marlins or Twins could give him the chance to close. There’s certainly no reason to give him anything more than that, not with Brian Wilson, Francisco Rodriguez, Matt Capps, Jon Rauch and Francisco Cordero all sitting around waiting for phone calls, too.
  1. historiophiliac - Jan 21, 2013 at 6:03 PM

    Bahahahahahahahahaha (gasp) hahahahahahahahahahahahaha….

  2. proudlycanadian - Jan 21, 2013 at 6:22 PM

    Why does the phrase “lipstick on a pig” come to mind?

    • Old Gator - Jan 21, 2013 at 7:00 PM

      I’m not sure. A beaver would look better with it, frankly.

  3. dalucks - Jan 21, 2013 at 6:33 PM

    I thought the Mets would sign him for 2 million or less until I saw Scott Boras was his agent. Maybe he will be available at the price 1 week before spring training and he will sign with the Mets.
    Honestly, looking at that list and as I think about the Mets bullpen, I think the Mets should sign all of those guys to 1 year contracts worth 2 million dollars each.

  4. peopletrains - Jan 21, 2013 at 6:48 PM

    Gene Smith would be all over this guy.

    • Old Gator - Jan 21, 2013 at 7:01 PM

      So would Johnny Mathis.

  5. paint771 - Jan 21, 2013 at 7:36 PM

    Still wondering if the Jays are going to take a flyer on anybody like Valverde. I doubt they’d be much interested in Capps/Rauch/Cordero (the last two obviously), and I think they’d have to feel pretty decent about their bullpen as-is – certainly it’s good enough at least as much as most other bullpens are, with no real reason to overplay for anybody to shore up a glaring weakness, and with some really interesting upside dudes that spent seemingly nearly all of 2012 auditioning, such as Loup/Delebar/Lincoln and then your Cecils, etc..

    But at the same time, a $2 million dollar deal for Valverde or Wilson would seem like a damn good signing – a steal even – for a team like the Jays, contenders with a “probably good enough” pen and their asses on the line for next season without the money or inclination to go after the ridiculous top-line relievers wanting multi-year deals. A Valverde or Wilson “no promises” rebuilding signing would have a lot, lot of upside for a team in the Jay’s position.

    • cur68 - Jan 21, 2013 at 8:08 PM

      No. Way. Both Valverde and Wilson are attention mongers. Who needs all that drama? Best thing to do is go with the guys who did a good job last season plus the new guys. Besides, Santos should be back. We good.

      • historiophiliac - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:31 AM


      • dan1111 - Jan 22, 2013 at 2:02 AM

        “attention mongers” – so they are trying to sell attention?

      • cur68 - Jan 22, 2013 at 3:24 AM

        book it danno: attention is all they have for sale.

  6. chucklewis13 - Jan 21, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    Calling the suckers (the Lerners and IIitch),the Avengent Agent has another a closer for hire.

  7. datdangdrewdundunituhgin - Jan 21, 2013 at 9:19 PM

    his splitter is gone due to elbow fatigue, from some reports i read. caused him to throw his 92 mph meat right down the pipe with alarming frequency.

    dude is cooked. buyer beware.

  8. halohonk - Jan 21, 2013 at 11:09 PM

    Heard the Rangers are looking for a closer with his postseason credentials. At least they could sign someone this offseason. Maybe he could play centerfield?

  9. mazblast - Jan 21, 2013 at 11:20 PM

    As much as I’d love to see Boras try to explain to some of his high-profile clients why they’re not getting ANY offers, I know some dipstick owner or GM will fall for Scott’s line of BS. It only takes one fool.

  10. beelza - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:31 AM

    Boras overplayed his hand RE Soriano. Once again, Nats bailout Boras. If MLB had a salary cap then Soriano is 6MM per year and Valverde would have an inverted base annual salary.

    • dan1111 - Jan 22, 2013 at 1:55 AM

      What does it mean that Boras “overplayed his hand”? Soriano got a $28 million contract. Do you think he would have gotten more if not for Boras?

      “If MLB had a salary cap” then everything about salary negotiations would be different than it is now. A player’s (imagined) value under a salary cap is completely irrelevant to the current situation.

  11. gbrim - Jan 22, 2013 at 8:44 AM

    A second-tier (or lower) guy doesn’t benefit by having Boras as his agent. Now that Valverde is in that group he should find an agent with better relationships with owners–he brings enough issues to the table all on his own.

  12. jayfur4u - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:11 AM

    Good luck “Big Potato”. He gets a lot of grief from Detroit fans but i think he was great going 49-49 2 years ago. Leyland might have killed his confidence by putting him in on non save situations. We all knew he sux. He is a mental case, when his confidence is down, he completely sux when he is on he cant be hit. Not sure why anyone will take a chance on him. Way too many decent closers out there with better upside.

  13. pogodog7 - Jan 22, 2013 at 5:25 PM

    The only way this guy is worth anything is if they pay him by the pound. He is an obese pig.

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