Scott Boras brokers the smallest deal of his career

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Great anecdote regarding Adrian Beltre’s signing with the Rangers in today’s Star-Telegram:

Adrian Beltre has worn jersey No. 29 almost his entire 13-year career. Julio Borbon has worn it his entire two-year career.Guess who is will wear it in 2011?

Scott Boras, who represents both players, handled the situation.

“I said, ‘Julio, there are traditions in the game, and I’ve got good news and bad news,'” Boras recalled. “‘The bad news is that the veteran player gets the number. The good news is that I am your advocate in negotiating with a very wealthy player to get you a very nice watch.”

Borbon will wear No. 20.

And I assume that Boras gets to wear the watch two days a week.

As far as negotiations over numbers go, however, there never was anyone better than Jeff Feagles, the former NFL punter.  Feagles wore number 17 for the Giants when Plaxico Burress came to town.  Feagles got Burress to pay for an outdoor kitchen at his vacation home in Phoenix in exchange for it. Before that, Feagles was number 10 when Eli Manning joined the team.  He got Manning to send the Feagles family on a vacation to Florida in order to give it up.

Feagles should probably just open his own consulting business focusing on numbers exchanges.

The Mets will not commit to Matt Harvey making his next start

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Matt Harvey has had a bad and injury-filled couple of years. He hit spring training in decent physical shape, however, and there was much talk about a possible Harvey Renaissance. At times in February, March and in his first start in early April he looked alright too.

That has changed, however. Over his last three starts he has allowed 14 runs on 25 hits in 16 innings, with his latest stinker being last night’s six runs on eight hits outing against the Braves. The poor pitching has resulted in Mets manager Mickey Calloway not committing to Harvey taking his next turn in the rotation. Or, as Ken Davidoff reports in the Post, not commenting when asked if Harvey would, indeed, make his next start.

It’s bad enough when the manager will not make such a commitment, but the Mets pitching coach, Dave Eiland, made comments after the game suggesting the possibility of the Mets putting Harvey in the bullpen. The comments were not pointed, but this suggests his thinking, I’d assume:

While neither Callaway nor Eiland would tip his hand about Harvey’s immediate future, Eiland, who most recently worked for the Royals, smiled when a reporter asked him if he had ever switched a starter to the bullpen under duress. “Yeah, a guy by the name of Wade Davis,” he said. “It turned out pretty well for him.”

That’s a generous way of putting it and, for Harvey, such comments could soften the blow to his ego if, indeed, the club decides to move him to the bullpen. It’s not a demotion, he could claim, it’s the team giving him a chance to regain his past stardom in a different role!

However, whether it was because he was stinging from a poor performance or because he simply hates the idea, Harvey seemed to reject the possibility out of hand, saying, “I’m a starting pitcher. I’ve always been a starting pitcher. That’s my mindset.”

Looks like he’s either going to have to change his mindset or else he’s not going to have a place to pitch in New York for very much longer.