As the MLB offseason gets underway and a potential lockout looms, super agent Scott Boras spent time at the GM Meetings on Wednesday to call out one of the biggest problems he believes exists in the sport: tanking.
“Obviously, we’ve got problems. We got problems now,” he said. “Because we got great players being moved around in the middle of the season that hurt the teams they left with the design that they’re going to be weaker. We don’t ever want a system that rewards being a lesser team. We want a system that always reward being a better team.”
Last season, four teams — the Diamondbacks, Orioles, Pirates and Rangers — all lost at least 100 games, which tied the single-season record that happened previously in 2002 and 2019.
Boras called out the league office for failing to understand the value of the draft, which has allowed for the tanking to take place, and suggested altering losing as an incentive for higher draft picks, although did not offer any specific alternative.
“The commerce of talent in any league should always be about acquisition of best talent for positive reasons,” he said. “We have got a real cancer in our game – it was not understood when the draft was capped. No one really understood – particularly in the commissioner’s office – that draft picks meant so much to teams. Cuz they’re not in the trenches of scouting. They don’t understand the value this has. Now we know. Now we know that clubs will just sacrifice seasons and say, ‘we’re not going to win, we’re not going to do this.’
“Players in the locker room, particularly young players, are sitting here saying ‘I thought we were about winning? I thought we were about growing our particular team?’ Fans are sitting here ‘why are we doing that?’ ‘Well, we have a good reason – we want to get higher draft picks.’ So, we have to remove that element to really make the game back to being competitive day in and day out.”
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