Monday, December 17, 2007
A-Rod reveals depth of rift with agent Boras
ESPN.com news services
NEW YORK -- Alex Rodriguez's desire to go it alone in contract talks with the Yankees drove a wedge between him and his longtime agent, Scott Boras.
The player revealed the depth of the hard feelings in a "60 Minutes" interview that aired Sunday, telling the CBS news magazine that he and Boras are not speaking to each other.
Rodriguez worked as his own agent in netting another record contract for himself -- $275 million over 10 years -- which was finalized Thursday. The three-time AL Most Valuable Player removed Boras from the negotiations after Boras announced Oct. 28 that his client would be opting out of his current deal.
When asked by CBS' Katie Couric to expound on his relationship with Boras, Rodriguez took his time before finally replying, "The whole situation saddens me a little bit. There hasn't been much back-and-forth talking."
When asked if he and Boras are speaking, Rodriguez said, "Not right now." Asked if that could change, he told Couric, "We'll see." Rodriguez said he had no contact with Boras during negotiations with the Yankees.
"60 Minutes" said Boras declined to be interviewed.
Rodriguez's quotes ran in Monday's editions of the New York Post. The "60 Minutes" interview began with questions about the Mitchell report and steroids; Rodriguez said he's never used performance-enhancing drugs.
Boras has advised Rodriguez since before the player broke into the majors with Seattle, 19 days before his 19th birthday.
The 32-year-old Rodriguez won his third AL MVP award last month after hitting .314 with 54 homers and 156 RBIs. He
said the way the opt out was handled -- during the Game 4 broadcast of the World Series -- was unsettling,
and he understood why baseball fans and officials were upset with
how it was handled.
"I was angered, upset, shocked, in disbelief," Rodriguez told "60 Minutes." "It was like a bad nightmare."
He said he and Boras agreed the slugger would opt out, but Rodriguez thought the move would be revealed after the World Series.
"When I realized things were going haywire, at that point I said, 'Wait a minute, I've got to be accountable for my own life. This is not going the way I wanted it to go.' So I got behind the wheel," he told "60 Minutes," according to the Post.
After opting out, Yankees senior vice president Hank Steinbrenner said New York would not negotiate further with Rodriguez because his decision eliminated the $21.3 million subsidy the Yankees were to receive from Texas from 2008-10, a figure negotiated at the time of the trade.
Rodriguez said once he did get in touch with Steinbrenner and his brother Hal, an executive vice president with the Yankees, it didn't take long to reach an accord. But the Yankees made it clear from the start of talks they would negotiate only if Boras wasn't part of them.
"I have a lot to prove in New York," said Rodriguez, who has never reached the World Series.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
When I realized things were going haywire, at that point I said, 'Wait a minute, I've got to be accountable for my own life. This is not going the way I wanted it to go.' So I got behind the wheel.
-- Alex Rodriguez, on Scott Boras' handling of his decision to opt out