LAS VEGAS -- Scott Boras addressed a massive pack of reporters here at the Bellagio at roughly 4:20 p.m. local time. He said Mark Teixeira, the most prominent free agent remaining, has received contract offers from every team with interest (presumably the Red Sox, Angels, Nationals, Orioles, and Yankees). The Red Sox have offered captain Jason Varitek a contract as well, Boras said, although he did not comment when asked if the catcher had other offers.
Boras on his clients:
On local ties being a factor for Teixeira:
Mark's decision is complex. There's regional ties. Certainly family is going to be part of his consideration.
How many teams have made offers so far?
On what else Teixeira is considering:
Obviously, the club's ability to win, and win long-term. Commitment by the owners, long-term, to the franchise being successful. Where they play, the city they're in. He's played in both leagues. He's had an opportunity to make an analysis of what's best for he and his family. And, of course, the economics.
We've been working around the clock. We've certainly had time to meet multiple times with multiple teams. And I've been [in] these things before. They could get done in a short period of time. They could certainly go beyond the time-frame of these meetings as well.
On if a contract could be done by the end of the meetings:
There are things that could occur that could allow that to happen. I can't say at this time that we're that close to a deal.
On Varitek's interest in Boston:
I think that Tek has always been a person -- he's the captain of a team, which is a rare event. And certainly Boston has let us know we want him back. We're talking about it. We also have to go out and look into other situations that will be able to him.
On the Sox' interest in Varitek:
Well, I mean, look, when a major league team approaches you about a player and offers them a contract, I guess that's serious.
So he has been offered?
On the catching market:
The catching market is probably the hardest one to predict, particularly for journalists. Because the fact is teams that have existing catchers don't come out and say that they're unhappy with their catchers because they can't find better catchers. So until they know they can acquire a catcher, they often don't let you know that there's an opening. It's a very experience-based position. It's the one position in baseball that there's so few candidates for position and the subjective analysis is so great for that position that a lot of what's said about catchers and the importance of catchers is left off the plate. Representing a catcher is like buying submarines. You have to look way under the water to find out what's really going on.
Does CC Sabathia's signing make the Yankees more desirable?
I think it gives players more of a road map where the Yankees are going. If I'm a baseball player and I have CC Sabathia on my team, I'm thinking it would be something that would be welcome. I think from the Yankees perspective, it certainly adds a star player to the team.
Does Sabathia's contract change market for position players?
I think with position players, we've got A-Rod up there with $30 million. I don't think it has a measurable impact on a position player. We had a couple free agents sign last year. Probably when you negotiate position player contracts, the metrics you use are more defined with those players.
On if CC Sabathia's signing make the market for Derek Lowe more aggressive:
I think the market certain pitchers is a little bit more defined now. Certainly the clubs that may have been involved in CC and the clubs that have always been interested in those players. I think in this marketplace, I'd estimate that maybe 14 or 15 teams are involved in about five players.
On Boston's interest in Teixeira:
I'll let you talk to Boston when it comes to free agency.
The scene when Boras emerged from the elevator in the hallway between the main casino and the media workroom was bizarre. Bellagio personnel broke up an initial scrum with roughly 40 to 50 reporters outside a gift shop after about five minutes because it was blocking traffic and they didn't want cameras rolling.
Some Bellagio folks escorted Boras to the media workroom as all the reporters followed behind him. When he walked arrived in the room, after about five minutes, a woman by the door said, "Gosh, I thought it was Elvis."
Boras hopped up on a chair and took questions for another 20 minutes or so. You can probably tell from the selected comments above he wasn't completely forthcoming. The most concrete thing he shared, really, was that the Red Sox had, in fact, offered Varitek a contract.
Theo Epstein is meeting with Boston reporters right now, giving his response to what Boras had to say. We'll have that later.