HARTMANJC asked me if I would have Scott Boras as my agent:
I played baseball for 23 years and had 23 one-year contracts. I could never have any one help me negotiate my contracts — you know who won that battle, the owners.
Back when I was young, if I were looking for an agent, I think I would have had several people helping me in Arkansas deciding who would be my agent, especially my Dad. When players first started to have agents, anyone could be an agent. There were a lot of unscrupulous agents out there. But almost all of those have been weeded out and what you see now are guys who help players in the long run. Boras would be one of guys I would interview or have my Dad interview but there are a lot of other good agents who might suit my personality.
Certainly Scott Boras gets some great contracts but there are many other agents that get great contracts, too. I think that the object is to start playing. Sometimes Boras’ clients have been helped by holding out and sometimes it has hurt them. Kids shouldn’t go right to the big leagues. There is a lot to learn in the minor leagues. You’re going from playing 50-60 games a year to playing 160 or so.
In my day, if you got more than $4,000 you were a bonus player and you had to go directly to the Major Leagues for two years. The owners kind of penalized themselves for giving the player all that money. I have never seen a kid come out of high school, other than a pitcher, who was ready to play in the Majors. You’re just inexperienced.
THOUGHTS FROM PENNSYLVANIA
Bruce asked if I remembered him and if I was going to be back in Pennsylvania now that I don’t do work for Best Chevrolet. Bruce, of course I remember you and Little Brooks! I worked with Best Chevrolet for many years. Since they sold their company I am now affiliated with Anderson Automotive Group in Baltimore. I bought my first car there 50 years ago when I came to Baltimore.
I’m sure I’ll be back to your area. I just made a visit to Ollie’s Bargain Outlet in York, PA. I’m in the Lancaster area a fair amount going to Lancaster Barnstormers games. They have a beautiful new stadium and a good tea. I feel very confident that York, PA is going to get a new ballpark also. It would be a tremendous value to the City of York…at least that’s my opinion. They need to be back in baseball. I made my professional debut in York, PA in 1955 as an 18 year old. I have many friends there. There is always something happening there. Check out my schedule on brooksrobinson.com for the next time I’ll be there.
Dgator97 asked when I’d be in Orlando. I did an appearance several months ago in Orlando. I don’t have anything on the schedule at this point. Thanks for thinking of me.
John asked about today’s third basemen: I chatted last week about Scott Rolen and Eric Chavez. I think Alex Rodriquez is one of the best players in the American League. I also think Melvin Mora here in Baltimore is coming into his own and has been a great player the last two years. He’s improved defensively and has become an outstanding hitter.
On Thursday, I hosted a press conference for the Brooks Robinson High School All Star Game. This is the 24th year we’ve had the game. It’s for all seniors over the state of Maryland. They are chosen by their coaches and participate in a tryout. If they make the team, they compete against each other in two squads — the North and South. They will be playing against each other July 10 after the Boston Red Sox Game at Camden Yards. My longtime friend, Joe Geier, sponsors the game.
It’s been an honor to me to see some of these kids to play in the game to go on to bigger and better things — like Mark Teixeira of the Texas Rangers and Gavin Floyd of the Philadelphia Phillies.
I’m in Homestead, Va., this weekend for the Sheetz’ Convenience Stores’ Golf Tournament to benefit children’s charities. Next Sunday, my good friend Boog Powell and I will be at Tidewater Sports in Norfolk, Va., then I head off to St. Louis for Al Hrabosky’s Charity Golf Tournament.
Chat with you soon. Brooks