DUENDIN, Fla. – Still trying to find work for clients Kendrys Morales and Stephen Drew, super-agent Scott Boras criticized ownership of the Toronto Blue Jays for not spending enough on their baseball team.
“There is no one who has the asset base of Rogers (Communications Inc.),” Boras told Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports on Sunday. “It’s a premium city. It’s a premium owner with equity. And it’s a very, very good team that with additional premium talent could become a contending team.
“They’re a car with a huge engine that is impeded by a big corporate stop sign … a successful and committed ownership that needs to give their baseball people financial flexibility.”
The Blue Jays made only one significant free-agent signing during the off-season, landing catcher Dioner Navarro for $8 million over two years. They’ve passed on starters Ubaldo Jimenez and Matt Garza and last week GM Alex Anthopoulos said any other additions via free agency were “unlikely,” an indication right-hander Ervin Santana isn’t a target, either.
Without any further moves, the Blue Jays payroll will set a club record at roughly $135 million, some $15 million above the $120 million spent in 2013. That total was a hefty spike from the $85-million payroll the team carried in 2012.
Reached for comment about Boras’ criticisms, Anthopoulos replied: “Our ownership has been outstanding and given us all the resources we need.”
Morales, a first baseman, would be a redundancy on the Blue Jays unless the team traded Adam Lind, although Drew, a shortstop, could be a fit if he shifted over to second base. Rookie Ryan Goins is the front-runner over Maicer Izturis, Chris Getz and Steve Tolleson for the starting job.
Boras was more complimentary toward the Blue Jays in November at the GM meetings, when he said “they’re well-armed with a very successful company behind them, certainly Paul Beeston knows how to put together a winner. There’s a process there that’s very ready for success.”
During those meetings, Boras and Beeston met for over an hour.
The Blue Jays haven’t had a Boras Corp. client on the big-league roster since Brad Wilkerson in 2008 and haven’t drafted a player the agency has advised since James Paxton, who didn’t sign and was later redrafted by the Seattle Mariners, in 2009.
Asked if he believes the Blue Jays may have intentionally turned away from his clients as a result of the failed Paxton negotiation, he said: “I’ve had constant communication with both Paul and AA throughout. It’s not anything to do with not talking, maybe just not the right fits.”