“The agent Scott Boras is famous for the binders that he prepares on each of his clients as he tries to persuade various general managers to sign off on lavish free-agent contracts,” writes the New York Times’ Michael D. Schmidt of baseball’s Public Enemy No. 1. While it wouldn’t be very difficult to assemble several hundred pages in tribute to the likes of Alex Rodriguez or Manny Ramirez, “the binder for the free agent Oliver Perez illustrates how this very formidable agent tries to make his players sound formidable, too, even when they™re not exactly superstars.” (link swiped from Repoz and Baseball Think Factory)
The Perez book is divided into eight chapters that include such headings as: œPerez Turns Corner in 2006, œPerez Is One of Baseball™s Top 5 Left-Handed Starting Pitchers, œA Rare Young Left-Handed Starting Pitcher Available on the Free-Agent Market, œBig-Game Ollie, and œDurable Ollie.
In the chapter œPerez Turns Corner in 2006, charts are used to argue that the pitching statistics for Perez, who is now 27, are similar to those of Randy Johnson and the Hall-of-Fame pitcher Sandy Koufax at the same age. What™s more, the charts argue that Perez™s control problems will improve, just like they did for Koufax and Johnson as they got older.
Chapter Three is titled: œPerez Is One of Baseball™s Top 5 Left-Handed Starting Pitchers. It puts Perez in a grouping with C.C. Sabathia, Cole Hamels, Ted Lilly and Johan Santana, who was Perez™s teammate on the Mets in 2007. Two charts are included to show that in each of the past two seasons on the Mets, Perez was the youngest left-handed pitcher in the majors to have an earned run average of less than 4.25 while accumulating at least 170 strikeouts and 10 victories.
If Boras doesn’t assemble such a tome, he’s not really doing his best on Perez’ behalf, nor do I begrudge Ollie maximizing whatever leverage he’s got in the prime of his career. But while Perez’ Mets tenure did represent a dramatic improvement from the hurler who was a mere accessory in the Xavier Nady / Roberto Hernandez swap, to call the lefty exasperating is to put a rated PG spin on his reliability. There’s no 9th chapter in the agent’s binder called “No Manager Has Ever Killed Himself (Or Anyone Else) During An Ollie Start”, and I’ll assume there were space limitations.