Mark Teixeira called reporters over to his locker this morning to announce that he’s dropped agent Scott Boras, who’s represented Teixeira since he was a first-round pick in 2001.
Teixeira explained the move by saying:
Sometimes, business relationships just run their course. Now that the contract is over with, I don’t want to be “Scott Boras client.” I want to be Mark Teixeira, baseball player, helping this team win championships. Scott did a great job getting me my contract. I wanted to be in New York from the beginning, and everything that I’ve asked for has come through so far. And from here on out, there’s no reason to worry about the contract. It’s all about winning championships and helping out the community.
It’s unclear why remaining with Boras would have precluded Teixeira from “winning championships and helping out the community,” but Marc Carig of the Newark Star Ledger reports that the Yankees first baseman “has contemplated a switch for more than a year, even hiring another agency to handle his off-field charitable efforts.”
Alex Rodriguez also parted ways with Boras last year, but the powerful agent recently lured Robinson Cano away from another agent and the actual monetary loss here doesn’t figure to be particularly significant. As the above quote from Teixeira notes, he’s signed with the Yankees through 2016 thanks to an eight-year, $180 million contract that was negotiated by Boras. The agent’s commission on that massive deal doesn’t change and by the time Teixeira is ready for another contract he’ll be 37 years old, so the potential for a big payday for his next representative is slim.
Still, it’s an interesting move considering Teixeira’s explanation.
Veteran utilityman Reid Brignac is in camp with the Astros on a minor league deal. The 31-year-old is close to being done as a major leaguer as he owns a career .219/.264/.309 triple-slash line across parts of nine seasons. In an effort to prolong his big league career, Brignac is now attempting to become a switch-hitter, MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports.
I’m going to try it out this year. It was something that I just thought long and hard about and I was like, ‘OK, I’m going to try and see how it goes.’ I used to switch-hit when I was younger off and on, nothing consistent. I could always handle the bat right-handed. I play golf right-handed, so I do a lot of things that way that feel natural.
I just want to get to the point where I’m trying to stay in games, not get pinch-hit for, not starting games because a lefty is starting. … That could help me stay in the games longer. I’m trying to add a new element. I play multiple positions and now if I can switch hit and be consistent at it, then that can only help me.
As Brignac mentions, he’s also verstile. He’s a shortstop by trade, but has also logged plenty of innings at second base and third base, and has occasionally played corner outfield.
There aren’t any examples — at least that I can think of — where players began switch-hitting late in their careers and actually succeeding in the major leagues. As the saying goes, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. But here’s hoping Brignac bucks the trend.
Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons fell off the map a bit last year due to a combination of the Angels’ mediocrity, Simmons’ lack of offense, and a month-plus of missed action due to a torn ligament in his left thumb.
Simmons is still as good and as smart as ever on defense. That was on full display Monday when the Angels hosted the Padres for an afternoon spring exhibition.
With a runner on first base and nobody out in the top of the second inning, Carlos Asuaje grounded a 2-0 J.C. Ramirez fastball to right field. The runner, Hunter Renfroe, advanced to third base. Meanwhile, Asuaje wandered a little too far off the first base bag. Simmons cut off the throw to first base, spun around and fired to Luis Valbuena at first base. Valbuena swiped the tag on Asuaje for the first out of the inning.