Thursday, December 19, 2013

Day 263: Stephen Drew Still Remains Unsigned... Tick Tock.

After the Red Sox won the World Series, they immediately started preparing the team to defend their title in 2014. That meant trying to wrap up some of their free agents—making offers to the guys they wanted to come back, and letting the others go. They made $14 million qualifying offers to three guys: Mike Napoli, Jacoby Ellsbury and Stephen Drew.

We all knew Ellsbury wasn't coming back to Boston. That was pretty much a sure thing since last spring. I remember going to see the NESN traveling show in March—a kind of open forum where fans got to ask Don, Jerry and Jenny questions—and that's one that came up. Even then Jerry was certain Ellsbury would be gone after the season (much to the dismay of several young female fans in the audience.) I'm sure some folks thought after the World Series win, he might want to stick around for more of this winning thing, but the lure of the big contract took him away.

Mike Napoli and Stephen Drew also turned down their offers. Napoli had a contract offer from his former team, the Texas Rangers, that was rumored to be around four years. He turned it down. In the end it was a two-year, $32 million deal that he accepted to return to Boston. It's what he had wanted and luckily it worked out for everyone.

Stephen Drew's agent, Scott Boras (the douchebag), was positive that grass was greener on the other side. Drew turned down the one-year, $14 million deal to test the market. Boras convinced him that teams would be knocking down the door for his talents. The door has been left untouched. The problem with the players who have turned down a qualifying offer is that the team who eventually signs them, must forfeit their highest unprotected draft pick. For a mediocre offensive player, that's a lot to ask.

The Red Sox have been patient. They're not going to make some ridiculous offer to Drew to get him back. He's just not worth it. The Sox have a shortstop so it's not like their desperate. Xander Bogaerts is more than capable of playing on the big stage—as we learned this past October. And the Sox just acquired Jonathan Herrera, an infielder from the Colorado Rockies, in a trade involving Franklin Morales and minor league pitcher Chris Martin. Herrera will sure up the infield as a back up and reduce the need for the Sox to resign Drew.

This was probably pretty bad news for Drew because as of today, offers aren't just rolling in for him and the Sox might not need him. But that's par for the course for a Scott Boras client. This is what happens when your agent blows sunshine up your ass and makes you think you're better than you really are. Kind of like what he did with free-agent outfielder Shin-Soo Choo. He turned down a seven year, $140 million contract from the Yankees because Boras thought he deserved a contract closer to what Jacoby Ellsbury received. Boras countered and the Yankees ended up signing Carlos Beltran instead. Oops.

Drew and Choo will be two names to follow as the off-season continues... I can't wait to see what they end up with after what they turned down. Stay tuned!

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