Scott Boras - Trading Agent
Despite his reputation as being a tough and sometimes callous negotiator, sports agent Scott Boras has consistently earned record salaries and better trades for the players that he has represented. After receiving his law degree in 1982 from University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law, Boras began his career as a lawyer doing medical malpractice work for the firm Rooks, Pitts & Poust. He now controls the Scott Boras Corporation and his marketing company, Impact Marketing.
As an agent, Boras has negotiated some of the most expensive contracts in the history of the professional sports industry including those of Alex Rodriguez, Carlos Beltran, Mark Teixeira, and J.D. Drew. Because of his reputation of acquiring better trades for his clients, the list of sports professionals currently working with him is believed to be over 70.
Some of Boras’ most notable work includes the contracts he negotiated for players like Johnny Damon for whom he secured a four-year $52 million deal with the New York Yankees. He was also the mastermind behind Barry Zito’s seven-year, $126 million agreement with the San Francisco Giants in 2006, representing at the time, the largest salary ever paid to a professional catcher.
Although Boras has a history of obtaining better trades than many other sports agents, he has received hefty criticism from the baseball industry. Many have said that the large contracts he settles for his clients have turned the sport into a “money game” and have amplified the gap between rich teams and poor teams. Boras’ focus on the bottom dollar has earned him the status of being “Baseball’s Most Hated Man.” Even some of his own clients have chosen to sever ties with him and turn to other agents in the field. Alex Rodriguez chose to negotiate his most recent contract without the help of Boras because the Yankees refused to meet with Rodriguez if Boras was present. Players like Carlos Zambrano, Kenny Rogers, and Jeremy Guthrie have also fired Boras in the past several years, believing that they could find better trades with another agent.
Still, Boras’ reputation continues to keep clients coming to him. There is no denying that Boras can achieve better trades for his clients, with salaries often far above their deemed market value. And while this practice has garnered criticism from the industry, individual players can’t deny the draw of Boras’ negotiating power.