It looks like Alex Rodriguez did in fact go around his agent Scott Boras in negotiating his new $275 million contract with the Yankees. The Wall Street Journal reports this morning (via ESPN) that A-Rod made the decision to leave Boras home during initial talks on the advice of world-renowned rich guy Warren Buffett. A-Rod was apparently upset after Boras talked him into opting out of his original contract, and asked his pal Buffett what he should do. A-Rod ultimately made contact with the Yanks through Goldman Sachs managing director John Mallory, who arranged things with the help of Gerald Cardinale, a Goldman Sachs man who has worked with the Yankees before.
I just have this image in my head of a tearful Alex Rodriguez calling Warren Buffett at three in the morning and begging him for advice. Like A-Rod was a college kid who bounced his first check and called his dad all scared and crying.
I know nothing, by the way, of the intricacies of baseball's rules about agents and whether it's legal for players to do the stuff A-Rod did. I did read somewhere that Boras will still be involved with the actual drafting of the contract and working out the details so I guess he's still in the loop to that extent. However, I have to wonder what kind relationship he can possibly have with A-Rod, now that he knows how mad A-Rod was at him for the lame way the whole thing went down. Boras has his little schemes and designs, and A-Rod went along with them, and then A-Rod woke up and realized what a douche he was being. Except that, all along, Boras was the one who was the douche.
I can see why some people would view all this as some kind of PR ploy, an attempt by A-Rod to fix the negative feelings people have about him after he acted all full of himself by opting out during the World Series. So maybe it's possible that Boras cooked up all this other stuff too, but I kind of doubt it. Warren Buffett would have to be in on it too now, and I just can't believe Buffett would go for such shenanigans. He has his own reputation to think about, plus he's got better things to do with his time.
The important thing, I guess, is that A-Rod is back with the Yankees. So we can look forward to many more seasons of A-Rod over-exposure. And it will only get worse as he nears Barry Bonds's asterisked home run record. Oh joy.