New York Yankees president Randy Levine had some choice words for baseball super-agent Scott Boras as owners and players are in the midst of intense negotiations to get the 2020 season started.
Boras has been accused of tampering with the negotiations and Levine added his voice to the allegations on Thursday.
“I’m very disappointed because I’m hearing more and more from all sides that Scott Boras—who I like and have done a lot of business with throughout the years—is providing confusing and wrong information to people on the union side,” Levine told USA Today on Thursday.
“I hear a lot of talk about the union filing a grievance. I respect our players and I believe they are the heart and soul of the game, and what people come to watch. But I’ve been practicing labor law for 40 years, I think I have a good grasp of what ‘bargaining in good faith’ means. And I don’t believe there’s any chance that any grievance based on the clubs’ failing to bargain in good faith would succeed.”
Levine hasn’t been the only one to accuse Boras of infiltrating the negotiations.
“Hearing a LOT of rumors about a certain player agent meddling in MLBPA affairs. If true — and at this point, these are only rumors — I have one thing to say… Scott Boras, rep your clients however you want to, but keep your damn personal agenda out of union business,” he wrote on Twitter.
Boras pushed back on the claims, telling USA Today that there was “no basis” for Levine’s suggestion and that all the information he’s received is “documented and sourced.”
“I’m not involved in these direct negotiations, no way,” Boras added. “I haven’t said a word. I don’t know why owners think it works that way.
“My job is representing individual players and consulting with them on their individual needs. I respond only when they ask. The players will call, ask for information, and I’ll respond. I don’t give them opinions. I give them facts. That can help define their opinion rather than giving your opinion.
“I represent a number of players who sit on boards and panels. I’ve got 15 guys who are making $25 million to $35 million a year. These guys have big voices. Let them speak. A lot of times the players don’t agree with the direction the union takes.”
Yankees reliever Zack Britton said Boras has never influenced his decision-making.
“He has never tried to influence my thoughts with the union. Never. I ask for his advice. He gives it. But he doesn’t interfere with the union business at all,” Britton told the paper.
One thing is definitely for sure, both the MLB owners and players union appear to be far apart on deciding on when and how to start the season. The two sides have yet to agree on how many games should be played and appear to be at least 10 games apart in negotiations.
Baseball, in general, was served up a meaty fastball down the plate in terms of coming back from the pandemic before any other sport in the U.S. But instead has been whiffing consistently and further angering fans who have stuck with the sport through the 1994 strike, the steroids scandal and the juiced-ball era.