After landing a six-year, $68 million contract with the White Sox last October, Jose Abreu batted .317 with 36 home runs and a .964 OPS this season and was the unanimous choice for the American League Rookie of the Year Award earlier this evening. As for this offseason, 24-year-old outfielder Yasmany Tomas is considered the next big thing out of Cuba. Naturally, his agent, Jay Alou, is doing his part to justify his client’s contract blowing Abreu’s out of the water.
According to Rob Bradford of WEEI.com, Alou had this to say at the general managers’ meetings today when he was asked to compare Tomas’ power to Abreu:
“He’s got more power than Abreu. He’s got a lot more power. Abreu’s a little older, more mature with his bat. Sometimes it takes guys longer to figure things out. And the last couple of weeks, a lot of things have clicked for Yasmany. I can tell you he’s got a lot more power than anyone I’ve ever seen. A lot.”
Alou is doing what an agent is supposed to do, so take this all with a grain of salt. And Tomas’ power is considered his best tool. Still, no pressure, Yasmany.
Alou told Jim Salisbury of CSNPhilly.com today that he considers the Phillies one of the front-runners to sign Tomas. It’s believed that his contract will surpass Rusney Castillo’s seven-year, $72.5 million deal with the Red Sox for the richest-ever for a Cuban player.
The owners meetings are going on in Arlington, Texas right now and something unusual is happening: the owners are using police to shield them from reporters seeking comment.
Chandler Rome, the Astros beat writer for the Houston Chronicle, attempted to talk to Astros owner Jim Crane at the hotel in which the meetings are taking place. Which makes sense because, duh, Rome covers the Astros and, if you haven’t noticed, the Astros are in the news lately.
Here’s how it went:
This was confirmed by other reporters:
To be clear: this is a radically different way things have ever been handled at MLB meetings of any kind. Reporters — who are credentialed specifically for these meetings at this location, they’re not just showing up — approach the GMs or the owners or whoever as they walk in the public parts of the hotel in which they’re held or in the areas designated for press conferences. It’s not contentious. Usually the figures of interest will stop and talk a bit then move on. If they don’t want to talk they just keep walking, often offering apologies or an excuse about being late for something and say they’ll be available later. It’s chill as far as reporters vs. the powerful tend to go.
But apparently not today. Not at the owners meetings. Now police — who are apparently off duty on contract security, but armed and in full official uniform — are shielding The Lords of Baseball from scrutiny.
We live in interesting times.