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Stephen Drew still wants $14 million, the Mets aren’t biting

Feb 18, 2014, 2:20 PM EST

Stephen Drew Getty Getty Images

Today’s Stephen Drew update: Mike Puma of the New York Post reporting that it’s “clear” that Scott Boras still wants Stephen Drew to get at least $14 million this season. It’s likewise clear that the Mets aren’t going to give him that. Nor is anyone else for that matter.

The qualifying offer/draft pick compensation system is dumb and is hurting the free agent market. But it’s also the setup right now and, within that setup, it looks like Boras and Drew miscalculated. He shoulda taken the $14.1 million and gone back to the Red Sox.

  1. uyf1950 - Feb 18, 2014 at 2:26 PM

    I would think at this point in the season and with all players expected to report for ST camps in just a few days Drew and Boras might be a little more realistic in their “wants”.

    • jeffbbf - Feb 18, 2014 at 5:47 PM

      I tend to think that the issue is a lot less of the “stupid” system and a lot more of Boras’ demands. Talent, at a reasonable price, will always trump a lottery pick in the next year’s draft. At any rate, Boras and Drew will just wait out the market and eventually get their money. Then, maybe we can stop hearing about how this new system is hurting free agents. If there was no draft pick compensation, do you really think Santana would be in camp with his $100 million contract?

  2. xpensivewinos - Feb 18, 2014 at 2:34 PM

    To save face (cuz we all know he promised Drew the every team would line up and offer him the stars and moon after the World Series), Boras will now have to sue MLB owners charging them with collusion and file a lawsuit against MLB for the compensation rule calling it an unfair labor practice.

  3. ez4u2sa - Feb 18, 2014 at 2:36 PM

    I wouldn’t be surprised to see him back with the Red Sox in the next few days. However, the Yankees need him more as a back up to Jeter who is bound to miss time over the course of the season.

    • 18thstreet - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:04 PM

      But, really, the Yankees should have signed him to play second long ago. Or third. That he can backup Jeter is the least of their concerns.

      • uyf1950 - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:14 PM

        If Drew had expressed a willingness to play a position other then SS “long ago” the Yankees may very well have done that. Unfortunately it’s not been that long that Drew through Boras his agent expressed a willingness to do that.

        Have a good day.

      • pmbryant - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:48 PM

        That’s the Yankees. Penny-wise, pound foolish. Jeter will be on crutches by the All-Star break. The Drew signing makes much more sense than Brian Roberts, Kelly Johnson, etc. etc. etc.

      • 18thstreet - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:11 PM

        They’re really the perfect team for the One Percent. All they value is the people at the top, and thus they never construct a bench worth anything.

        And I’m grateful for it. It’s been going on for years now. The 2004 Red Sox never come back if someone other than Tony Clark was on that roster as a backup first baseman.

      • genericcommenter - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:04 PM

        He turned down the opportunity to play for the Yankees.

  4. billybawl - Feb 18, 2014 at 2:42 PM

    This is a bit like saying the Miami Heat lost the game just because they’re down by 10 points at the end of the 3rd quarter. Boras is just getting started. Remember Kyle Lohse? He didn’t sign until late March last year, and he got paid.

    • scatterbrian - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:37 PM

      “This is a bit like saying the St. Louis Cardinals lost the game just because they’re down by 4 runs at the end of the 7th inning.”

      FTFY

  5. sdelmonte - Feb 18, 2014 at 2:48 PM

    He sure isn’t worth that kind of money to the Mets.

    And kudos to the Bosox for not bidding against themselves, which I think would be the case.

    • pmbryant - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:56 PM

      The Mets need Drew every bit as much as the Yankees. I find this whole austerity charade by the Mets to be in really, really poor taste, for a team that had a $150M five years ago and is now pinching pennies at around $87M. I don’t give a damn about Bernie Madoff, and I CERTAINLY don’t give a damn about Fred Wilpon’s grandchildren. SELL THE DAMN TEAM IF YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO RUN IT PROPERLY. Craig, the NY Press is largely giving the Wilpons a pass on this. It’s not right. The Wilpons need to step aside, for the good of Mets fans and MLB. They are only stewards. They make the money/ose the money, but the team BELONGS to the fans.

      • sdelmonte - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:48 PM

        I like their approach. It is exactly how I would spend my money.

      • bowltr - Feb 19, 2014 at 6:59 AM

        “but the team BELONGS to the fans”

        Really? When did you start signing the paychecks?
        That’s about as dumb a comment as I’ve ever read.

  6. chip56 - Feb 18, 2014 at 2:52 PM

    “it looks like Boras and Drew miscalculated.”

    There have been a lot of reports like this over the years and they usually end the same way – the player gets a good contract and writers say how dumb they feel for betting against Boras.

    • pastabelly - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:05 PM

      How did that work out for Jason Varitek (another Boras client)?

      • chip56 - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:16 PM

        Not terribly well – then again it was widely known that Varitek only wanted to play for Boston and so teams didn’t bid for his services because they didn’t want to be used by Boras to run up the price. Not really the same issue here.

      • bowltr - Feb 19, 2014 at 7:04 AM

        “then again it was widely known that Varitek only wanted to play for Boston and so teams didn’t bid for his services”

        Not true. Detroit went after him.

        If I recall Varitek turned down $10 mil qualifying offer for 1yr and then got that much for 2yrs. Dumb move by Boras and Varitiek but really dumb move if he was only willing to sign with the Sox.

      • stoutfiles - Feb 19, 2014 at 10:22 AM

        “because they didn’t want to be used by Boras to run up the price”

        That makes no sense, other teams should run up the price. You don’t want your competitors getting players for cheap.

  7. tcostant - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:09 PM

    Last season Rafael Soriano looked like he should have taken the qualifying offer from the Yankees and then Boras pulled a 2 year / $28M contract out of his hat.

    Never unestimate Boras.

    • pmbryant - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:46 PM

      Kyle Lohse, too. Absolutely. I firmly believe Boras calls in favors in situations like this, with the assurance that in the future he’ll steer a bigger fish to the team that bails him out.

      • kyleshabram - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:50 PM

        doubtful

      • stoutfiles - Feb 19, 2014 at 10:25 AM

        So that team can overpay for a big fish? I’m pretty certain every team hates Boras with a passion, but teams get desperate to fill holes knowing their jobs are on the line.

  8. hep3 - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:26 PM

    “The qualifying offer/draft pick compensation system is dumb and is hurting the free agent market.”

    Since the beginning of free agency in the fall of 1976, hasn’t the compensation for losing a free agent always been a sandwich draft pick between the first and second rounds?

    So the players and owners collectively tweaked the system a little and make it so you totally lose your first or second round pick (unless it is protected) and the agents are crying foul. The qualifying offer seems to be a good thing to me. This year’s $14 million seems to be a fair offer for those players in the middle like Kendrys Morales, Stephen Drew and Ervin Santana.

  9. bobwsc - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:26 PM

    is it the system that’s dumb Craig, or the agent? Boras thought there would be a robust market for Drew and granted hind sight is 20/20, but he badly overestimated the potential market for Drew.

    • 18thstreet - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:12 PM

      I remain shocked that the Cardinals didn’t take him.

      • missingdiz - Feb 18, 2014 at 6:03 PM

        The Cards signed a guy who’s been a bit better than Drew.

  10. pmbryant - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:38 PM

    Boras doesn’t lose face. Ever. He will get $14.2M or better for Drew. Probably from a team nobody even thought was interested in Drew that hasn’t publicly emerged yet.

  11. davidpom50 - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:48 PM

    I wonder if a lot of teams interested in a decent shortstop are waiting to see what happens with Aledmys Diaz, the Cuban dude who can sign starting tomorrow.

    • pmbryant - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:05 PM

      Good observation

  12. gbrim - Feb 18, 2014 at 3:56 PM

    Boras hasn’t been as infallible in the last couple of years as he was when he earned his reputation. I wouldn’t bet against him, but teams will never do him any favors, or even give him the benefit of the doubt.

    • pmbryant - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:08 PM

      Who has Boras gotten burned with? Name someone. I think the Soriano and Lohse signings only confirmed Boras’ skill at pulling a rabbit out of a hat.

      • tcostant - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:33 PM

        And don’t forget Prince Fielder. He went deep into the offseason and Boras was talking giant dollars. Lots of teams moved on and looked like Prince was going have to take a shorter deal to save face. And then the Tigers signed him to a NINE YEAR contract.

      • tuberippin - Feb 18, 2014 at 9:07 PM

        “Name someone.”

        2010: Jarrod Washburn.

        2010: Johnnny Damon; turned down multiple NYY offers that were in the range of 2yrs/$17-19mil, ultimately got 1yr/$8mil from Detroit.

        2010: Felipe Lopez; coming off his best offensive year (112 OPS+, .810 OPS) wherein he made $4.9mil, ended up getting 1yr/$1mil from STL. Later released.

        On the other hand, he also got both Barry Zito and Jayson Werth 7/$127mil apiece, got Fielder 9/$214mil, Alex Rodriguez 10/$275mil at age 31, et cetera, so we remember him as almost infallible in contract negotiations. Hell, the man got Oliver Perez 3/$36mil and Chan Ho Park 5/$65mil.

  13. pmbryant - Feb 18, 2014 at 4:09 PM

    kyleshabram, you don’t know jack. Just watch. Boras will leave you shaking your head. You can bet against him, but you will lose. every time.

  14. tfbuckfutter - Feb 18, 2014 at 5:04 PM

    It’s kind of funny that he was so useless in the postseason when, if he had actually outperformed his career standards he’d probably have more than a few suitors.

    But Boras can’t play the “Look how good he is under pressure” card. At all.

  15. triaxfusion - Feb 18, 2014 at 5:06 PM

    I love the compensation. It tries to maintain competitive balance in a sport where big market teams have every advantage possible. The reason Drew, Santana, and until yesterday Jimenez are/were still available is because they aren’t that good. A team would be silly to give big money and draft pick for a very average player. If the league viewed them as a real upgrade then the draft pick compensation wouldn’t be an issue.

  16. cackalackyank - Feb 18, 2014 at 5:17 PM

    Look, up in the sky, it’s super Boras coming to save the day. No, no, wait, its just the story about Jurickson Profar’s hinkey shoulder worrying the Rangers.

  17. sportsnut101 - Feb 18, 2014 at 6:35 PM

    Sign him for 3 28 mill. Not bad

  18. nolasoxfan2012 - Feb 18, 2014 at 6:38 PM

    There’s nothing wrong with the draft-pick compensation system. It’s fair and provides for a very high salary. What’s wrong is that some agents gave their players bad advice. That’s on them, not the system.

  19. hockeyflow33 - Feb 18, 2014 at 7:41 PM

    He was nuts for not signing that qualifying offer.

    • hep3 - Feb 18, 2014 at 7:57 PM

      Kendrys Morales is the one that really misjudged the market. He should have jumped all over the qualifying offer.

  20. skibikekayak - Feb 19, 2014 at 11:42 AM

    Boras botched this and he knows it, because Drew could have had the 14 million with the Red Sox. Other players have to be looking at this abortion and asking themselves if they really want Boras representing them.

  21. volkswankin - Feb 19, 2014 at 2:07 PM

    I find it odd that you think Boras “pulling a rabbit out of a hat” is expected. In my mind it was a desperate strategy that eventually paid off, but I’m sure both he and his client were not 100% sure that it would work. Sure things worked out for Soriano, Lohse and Fielder, but prior to these late FA signings, this was not commonplace as I’m sure teams would prefer to go into Spring Training with predictable roles for star players and healthy competition for less certain positions.

    The question that remains is did Boras guess the market right, or did he overplay his hand? Boras sure seems confident that he’s right, and a stupid/desperate GM will eventually fork over the $55 million over 4 years, with an 1-year player opt out contract he wants. I tend to agree. Whenever you can create a market and a bidding war among more than 2-3 people, the seller usually wins because the stupidest person ends up overpaying. That’s just how competition and capitalism work folks. Plain and simple.

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