Boras on Scherzer talks: “This is not church bingo”

Scott Boras has a binder prepared for all his top clients to help put some statistics behind their case. The Max Scherzer one is pretty big.

“We’ve narrowed it down to 45-50 pages,” Boras said.

It includes the much-publicized “pitching odometer” Boras has mentioned. It has stats ranging from such advanced metrics as Fielding Independent Control to traditional stats such as the Tigers’ winning percentage in games he pitched compared to everyone else in Detroit’s rotation.

“Max Scherzer is the type of athlete that just covers all bases,” Boras said. “He is actually getting better. He’s rare. Since he developed a curveball two years ago, left-handers hit 40-50 points less against him. He’s durable. He’s one of only four men in baseball the last two years that had 57 starts that go six-innings plus. Against postseason teams, he had an ERA of about 2.8 during the season. He wins in the postseason. He’s durable. And he’s one of those rare Cy Young Award winners where he’s at 29, but he has the innings and the pitches of a 26-year-old, of a Kershaw when he was 26 or a Felix Hernandez when he was 26 or a Sabathia when he was 26. So he offers a team so much because he’s durable, he’s fresh, he’s gifted, he’s getting better, he’s a leader, he’s great in the locker room, and he’s been tested and has achieved the highest award of any pitcher. This is a rare opportunity for a team.”

It’s a wide range of evidence, but one specific argument: Scherzer is a game-changer.

“Signing Max Scherzer can make a dramatic difference in the outcome of many divisions – most of them in baseball, to be honest with you,” Boras told reporters. “You sign one player, and you can say that a division race has been impacted to where it would lean toward the team that would sign him. …

“I think going into this year Max is kind of a Peyton Manning, No. 1 kind of guy. He’s always on the information train to improve himself, to evaluate his market. Last year, he really turned down a deal that was seven years and $160 million. He looked at the markets, and we have a new revenue structure in the game — we’re well over nine billion – and he really wanted to have the opportunity for choice, to see what teams are interested in him. Going into this, we knew that there really was not going to be any other pitcher that would impact his free-agent pursuit and the fact that his pitching odometer is so different and so unusual for a No. 1 pitcher.”

That number sounds different than the 6-year, $144 million offer we heard about in Spring Training, so I checked to clarify. That figure includes the $15.5 million Scherzer made in 2014 in a one-year deal to avoid arbitration. Take that out, he meant six years beyond free agency at just over $144 million.

Boras did not get into what they’re seeking now, other than to say that recent contract extensions signed by others aren’t necessarily relevant.

“I think the part that you start with is that you’re looking at a free-agent player,” Boras said. “All the prominent pitchers that have signed – Verlander, Hernandez or Kershaw – were not free agents. Certainly if you put a performance like Kershaw into a free-agent market, you’re going to get a much, much different calibration of value than you would when he signed outside of one. I think we have to look not to any particular model other than free-agent models to really know what the markets going to be like.”

More Tigers specific, Boras was asked whether Scherzer has expressed a desire to remain in Detroit.

“Certainly I’ve had this conversation with the Tigers about his willingness to return, and that’s been expressed at every level,” Boras said. “He’s had a great experience in Detroit. Detroit can be a winning team and he’s very familiar with it, obviously, so he is certainly willing.”

The reference to every level certainly suggests ownership.

“I don’t talk about my conversations with owners,” Boras said. “I can only say that Mike Ilitch is very involved with his team and is one of the owners in baseball that I think fans in Detroit have to support. He deserves every bit of respect. He’s always done everything, I think, to make his team and that city what Detroit’s become. To draw 3 million fans in a great stadium is a real credit for the Ilitch family.”

Asked whether there’s a timetable for Scherzer to make a decision, Boras said no, because there are so many factors involved.

“Max has given me kind of a laundry list of what his needs are, what his wants are,” he said. “As to timeframe of these things, you can’t tell, because these negotiations are largely owner decisions, owner-driven. I think every general manager in baseball wants Max Scherzer on their team. There’s no doubt about that. It’s not something you have to trade for. It’s just really something that the owner has to decide what the economics are.”

Finally came the question of whether the Tigers will get the right to match a final offer when it comes time for Scherzer to make a decision. That brought the money line from Boras.

“No, this is not church bingo,” Boras said. “You pretty much are in the market on a player. You tell all the teams and everyone involved that he can sign at any time. He’s open to signing at any time. If we get in a room and we carry out a negotiation and he’s pleased with it, it can be done without notice at any time.”

50 Comments

bora$ being bora$

Jason twitted.”Dombrowski daily session was supposed to be an hour ago. No new time yet. Other signs suggest Tigers have something significant in works.”
Span? Clippard?

Piecoro:
“GM Dave Stewart said Dioner Navarro and Alex Avila, catchers who could be available via trade, could be fits for Dbacks.”
Too late, they already traded a good LHP. Or Parra?

the idea that the team who signs Scherzer can start printing playoff tickets is a delicious bit of hyperbole

Boras is sooooooo condescending.

It’s the circus we knew we’d see when the March offer was turned down. My favorite is the “pitching odometer.” Less innings, less pitches, because he’s a six inning pitcher.
I’m much more interested in someone like Clippard, who is a very good relief pitcher, or even Detwiler. There are talented individuals on the Washington roster. I suspect the Tigers want to make moves but don’t have the pieces to form a trade.

It grinds me every time one of these suits say “to be honest with you”

It’s starting.

Just Porcello starts to become the pitcher we all hoped he would be, DD trades him for a 1 year player. I sure hope as heck Scherzer is in the mix then.

Cespedes + a minor leaguer.

They just said Cespedes + 2 minor leaguers. Another trade in the works, too.

Heck, they might just sign Max now with Ricky gone. I’m on the fence about Cespedes, but hope he does well. Maybe one or both of the minor leaguers we get are bullpen help. The Tigers still need help in that area.
http://minoringinbaseball.com/

Someone from the Reds

We got what looks to be a helper in the BP along with Cespedes
.
And we’re still going to make a trade with the Reds? Perhaps we’ll deal Price and Porcello in the same day…then turn around and sign max. o_O hold on to your hats today fellas!

If you have MLB network, Dave is going to be interviewed in a few minutes. Alfredo Simon is the pitcher from the Reds.

Hate losing Porcello. He was just always part of the gig, you know? They got their outfielder. I always thought Cespedes was easy to get out, but maybe that was Detroit pitching.
Overall, sounds like today’s dealings will help. I hope.

I’ll miss Rick, but he’s probably excited to go to Boston.

And now the Tiger regulars(not counting pullpen) who came through the system is three: JV, AA, and Rookie 1. This is why I hate the game more and more every day.
Ricky P at the soon old age of 26 has more pitching experience than 60 percent of the SP’s in MLB. I surely hope Senor Cespides is the answer for this year. Just truly heartbroken with the direction of our team. Will go to my grave bleeding Royal Tiger Blue, but certainly see why loyalty to one team is a thing of the past.

Ugg…. now we rid of Suaerez and Crawford. Their farm system will be garbage very soon. Simon did have a good last season, and it looks like our rotation is set. For now…
http://minoringinbaseball.com/

People talk about our lousy farm system all the time, but Dave seems to keep pulling them out of a hat. The teams who don’t win much accumulate better draft picks, but Dave does really well In the international market. We’ve lost several really good guys in the minors for trades.

The best part of that interview was when someone’s phone rang and Dave, in the middle of the interview, reached right away for his phone to answer. He didn’t shut if off.

pretty exciting moves today. I think we’re looking good now! Big Pasta from CIN is going to help. Cespedes, Miggy, Vmart is going to be GNARLY!

would the lineup be…..Kinsler, Cespedes, Miggy, VMart, JMart, Casty, Avila/McCann, Iggy and Rajai/Gose?

Boras is a slick cut throat sales-shark who would rob old ladies blind at church bingo.

At least Dave is actually doing something. Cespedes will be very good in Detroit. I’ll miss Porcello as I think he was on the verge of being very, very good.
The trade I don’t like much is losing Crawford AND Suarez for a mediocre 33 year old RHP going into free agency. I don’t see anything very impressive with Simon other than his size.
The Porcello trade virtually assures Steven Moya at Toledo.
My guess is Collins makes the team as they will want Moya to be getting as many ABs as possible. Collins will help the bench strengt situation.
We still do not have an elite, or even a dependable, left-handed arm in our bullpen.

Greg and kathy, I agree with your concerns about the farm system. Generally I think Dombrowski does a pretty slick job of working with his minor league talent. I discussed this at MCB the other day http://motorcitybengals.com/2014/12/09/detroit-tigers-farm-system-young-guns-and-spent-bullets/
Not so sure he took enough adantage of Crawford and Eugenio though. I don’t get that one. Picking up Greene and Simon virtually assures no Max though. And at 200 million, that is obviously a good thing.

i didn’t know you contributed to MCB – cool man. nice article too.

sorry I hate all these moves I don’t get what Dave is doing anymore I don’t know

Which one do you dislike the most or puzzles you the most?

He is retooling like BB, his alter ego. DD is Beane with money. He is rebuilding but at the same time in winning now mode.He failed to pass the first round so he needs to go back to the design room but have no time to fail.

4.25 ERA ,nothing to miss. Latos was out of reach

I tend to think that Detroit is now more likely to re-up Scherzer. They rid themselves of Porcello’s upcoming free agency and Simon is yet unproven as a reliable starter. I still think it unlikely but less so than yesterday.

Porcello signed with the Tigers a MLB contract ,now forbidden, because Boras scared every suitor for him.He fired Boras an opted out of that contract to get a higher rise since he was super-two. Business as usual.

Simon is the replacement for Porcello, one of five pitchers in MLB history to win 75 or more games by age 25. A 33 year old starter with one break out season, and a shady past on top of that. Remember that Gallaraga pitched the perfect non perfect game, and is nowhere to be seen. If the World Series is the aim for this year, go all in for Max too. You never have enough pitching. What we have is a group of overpaid stars whose next injury might be the end. The lineup might be the best thing since the Big Mac, but by George, do you not have a lot of questions:
Will Miggy be ready to go?
Can Victor continue to hit at age 36?
Was Julio’s season a one time fluke?
Can Gose hit .220?
How many times will Alex see stars this season?
Will Ian put together a full season of solid hitting?
Does Rookie 1 take it to the next level at age 23?
Are Rags’ legs going to hold on at age 34?
Is the new Wizard of Oz a bonafide .275+ hitter?
Does Cespides become the answer for a solid corner outfielder? He bats righty doesn’t he? Is he 29, or is he approaching 34? And is Yohannes is real name? Maybe, he’s Hugo Garcia.

And how about the SP’s?
Can JV get his mind back on the mound and off of Kate’s assets?
Will David Price find true happiness in Motown?
What will we get for the 16M man, Anabal, 200 innings and 14+ wins or 2 months on the DL?
Does Shane beat anyone else other than us?
And does Simon really say?

THEN, there’s the Pen.
Best of luck Rick. You were a rarity. One of ours, and we kept you through full control of the contract. Ain’t free agency wonderful?

I dont understand the Simon trade. If Iglesias is not ready , Romine – Perez?
Simon ´s career FIP:4.45. Porcello´s 4.02. His ERA is better,so he needs good defense

Probably 10 million reasons would be my guess and that pays for Cespedes.

Oh, look, Jason is being interviewed right now!!!

Great points Greg. Baseball is an “ifffy” game isn’t it?
My best guesses on your questions:
Miggy will be ready and have a better year.
Victor will have a good year but nowhere near what he did this one.
Julio is not a fluke.
Gose will hit around .240
Unfortunately, so will Rajai.
If he is not trtaded, Alex will become #2.
Cespedes will make fans pretty happy with the trade.
Casty will not experience a sophmore jinx and improve somewhat defensively.
Kinsler will become more consistent this year but not hit as well overall.
JV becomes a better pitcher but not as good as Price.
Soria becomes closer and because of his rapport with fans, Nathan takes over Paws’ role.
Brad Ausmus learns how to manage better.
Andrew Miller strikes out the heart of the batting order in his first appearance against us.
We will be rabid Tiger fans again in 2016.

Thanks for the reassurance Dan. As down as I am now, I am rabid about the Old English D

We have common syndrome.

“Rangers obtain Ross Detwiller from the #Nationals for 2 minor leaguers” Sherman…..

Could have used him.

96 pitchers have won 75 games before being 26

Out of how many thousands of MLB pitchers?

You are correct ElTigre; I was alluding to the fact that Rick was one of five pitchers who won at least 10 games in each of their first five seasons. Sorry about the misstep, and thank you for keeping us all on our toes.

Good luck to Rick. I remember the first time I saw him after hearing so much about him before he started pitching in the bigs. He was giving autographs at Tiger Fest and looked like a 15 year old kid sitting at the table. It was fun watching him mature and I wish him all the best.

why is Alex Wilson not mentioned 1 time on this thread/comments? seems like he is going to help this pen – but perhaps i’m confused.

RH, Tommy John like every RH in the Tigers bullpen. He fits .

well at least it was a long time ago (2007). I know people talk about him as a middling innings guy but doesn’t he have experience closing games?

Probably the last time I tell this one, but the first time I saw Porcello pitch was spring training, 2008. It was against Cleveland and it was in Winter Haven with Bob Feller in attendance. Rick was 19. After a typically long AB by Victor Martinez, Rick got him swinging on a 3-2 changeup, a pitch selection I found impressive. After the game a media guy, who may have been Anthony Castrovince, leaned over from the pressbox and gave me a Tigers media guide.
Now Feller is deceased, I believe that ballpark is torn down, and Porcello is no longer a Tiger. But if that was Anthony, he’s still with us. 🙂

definitely hard to tell if what happened today was good or bad for the tigers

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