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 Major League Baseball's general managers Meeting News

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PostSubject: Major League Baseball's general managers Meeting News   Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:47 am

GMs discuss ideas for tweaking Draft
Change would better reflect previous season's standings

By Barry M. Bloom / MLB.com

11/10/09 7:21 PM EST

CHICAGO -- Major League Baseball's collective general managers floated the idea of changing the order teams pick in the First-Year Player Draft to better reflect their success during the previous season. The topic came up at Tuesday morning's meeting.

As of now, the 30 teams pick in order of their regular-season finish. The new concept includes postseason success as well, meaning the team that wins the World Series would pick last rather than the team with the best regular-season record.

"It's an open-ended question," said Giants GM Brian Sabean. "It's a subject that wasn't resolved during the meeting."

Changing any of the rules of the First-Year Player Draft is a matter for collective bargaining and won't be addressed until representatives for the owners and Players Association begin to negotiate a new Basic Agreement during the 2011 season. The current agreement expires on Dec. 11, 2011.

There has also been some traction among owners to create a worldwide Draft of amateur players. As of now, only amateur players from the U.S., Canada and Puerto Rico are included in the Draft. The remainder of the players from other baseball-playing nations are considered free agents.

That topic didn't come up among the GMs at Tuesday's meeting, said Jimmie Lee Solomon, MLB's executive vice president of baseball operations.

Under the proposed new plan, the eight teams making the playoffs would pick behind the teams with the worst records from 1 to 22.

"Right now, the proposals that were bandied about today talked about a team's overall success the previous year," Solomon said, "that it should have a direct correlation on the position a team drafts in during the succeeding year."

Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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PostSubject: Re: Major League Baseball's general managers Meeting News   Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:49 am

Boras holds court at GM meetings
Agent discusses latest free-agent prize -- client Holliday

By Scott Merkin / MLB.com

11/11/09 12:04 AM EST

CHICAGO -- Scott Boras held court with the media for 30 minutes Tuesday in the lobby of the O'Hare Hilton during Day 2 of Major League Baseball's General Managers' Meetings.

Approximately two-thirds of this particular conversation centered upon the topic of Matt Holliday, the latest big-ticket free agent represented by Boras. Make that franchise player, according to Boras' depiction.

"I think we have less than 30 franchise players in this game and they are hard to come by," said Boras, including Holliday in this group. "It all boils down to last year we had one club that went out and made a commitment to a franchise player and they won a world championship."

Of course, the New York Yankees are that club referred to by Boras, and first baseman Mark Teixeira stood out as the franchise player. Teixeira, who agreed to an eight-year, $180 million deal with the Yankees prior to the 2009 campaign, also is represented by Boras.

Holliday, 29, comes off a 2009 campaign in which he launched 24 home runs and drove in 109 between stops in Oakland and St. Louis. In fact, Holliday played a significant role in the Cardinals' run to the National League Central title with his .353 average, 13 home runs and 55 RBIs in 63 games.

With that experience in mind, Boras said that he has had talks with St. Louis general manager John Mozeliak "all along" concerning the career .318 hitter.

"I'm here to meet with teams," Boras said. "We understand the Cardinals are interested in him. And you have to understand that Matt had a very favorable time in St. Louis."

Other highly-recognizable Boras clients such as Johnny Damon, Joe Crede, Jason Varitek and Alex Cora drew inquiries on Tuesday night. One reporter even asked Boras what he thought Hideki Matsui deserved on the open market, even though Boras doesn't represent Matsui.

Boras certainly wasn't about to provide some sort of ceiling for a player not working with him, just as he wasn't talking years and dollars for players such as Holliday or Damon. Boras certainly was effusive in his praise of all of his clients, but particularly Holliday, quite possibly the No. 1 target of numerous teams out of the present free agent pool.

"In free agency, if you have five teams [seriously interested], that's a big number," Boras said. "These types of players, always 10 or 15 teams come to you and they kick the tires and in the end, they are going to make decisions for the optimum situation or the general manager will find out the owner is really not going to go to that level in the market place.

"A Matt Holliday is another player like that in this market place. You have a franchise player at a young age and you have a chance to really differentiate yourself as a franchise from all others and we'll see how many teams are really going to be involved.

"I've been around baseball a long time," Boras said. "And the reality is Matt Holliday is a complete player."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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PostSubject: Re: Major League Baseball's general managers Meeting News   Wed Nov 11, 2009 9:52 am

GMs pass on expanding instant replay
Officials meeting in Chicago leave topic to Commissioner

By Barry M. Bloom / MLB.com

11/10/09 5:17 PM EST

CHICAGO -- Expansion of instant replay, a topic many thought would be the focal point Tuesday of the General Managers' Meetings in Chicago, for now at least, has turned out to be a non-issue.

Major League Baseball's general managers did not propose or vote on an expansion of the league's replay system at the first session of this year's GM Meetings, which conclude Wednesday.

Commissioner Bud Selig had said on several occasions during the World Series that he was not in favor of expanding a system that had been implemented late in the 2008 season to help determine boundary calls on homers -- fair or foul, in or out.

"It all lies with the Commissioner right now," said Jimmie Lee Solomon, Major League Baseball's executive vice president of baseball operations, who sat in on the meeting. "He'll have to make the determination about whether he wants to start discussions on that. I know some [GMs] have talked off-line about the expansion of instant replay, but the Commissioner doesn't see any reason to consider it."

The topic rose to the fore during the first two rounds of the playoffs, when umpires publicly admitted they had missed calls on at least three occasions.

"You've got to understand, we just put in instant replay in 2008," Solomon said. "We only have now a season and a couple of months' experience with it. Now there are those who clamor for more and more instant replay. I think we have to digest what we've got. We've got to look at this technology and look at where we are as a sport.

"The Commissioner is going to talk to a lot of people in a lot of different disciplines before he makes a decision that impacts and changes our sport. He's been very methodical about making those types of decisions and he will continue to do so."

Although there is a significant divergence of opinion among GMs about expanding the system to other close calls, no voice was given to that at the meeting. Instead, a report on the current system was the only mention of the topic.

Yankees GM Brian Cashman said he's in favor of expanding relay.

"I'm big on technology," Cashman said. "I'm open to any way we can help the umpires. We want what the umpires want -- to get the calls right. If the Commissioner's Office and the umps' union decides we already have the best format, then this is the best format. If there's a better way, we'll discuss it and pursue it, and we'll leave it in their hands."

Mets GM Omar Minaya offered the opposing point of view.

"I don't want to say that I'm a 'traditionalist,' because I'm in favor of it the way it is," Minaya said. "But if you keep expanding it, it gets into areas where I'm not comfortable. Look, umpires are going to make bad calls. I just don't want to get too much into other plays. I'm happy with the way it is right now."

Two years ago, the general managers gathered in Orlando and asked the MLB committee that oversees umpires to explore the use of replay on a limited basis. Although no vote was taken on the issue, the GMs asked the committee to come back with recommendations.

That process took nearly a year and half before the recommendation to use replay on home run calls only was accepted by Selig, ratified by the umpires' union and approved by the owners. MLB then put monitors accessible to the umpires in each ballpark and established a central location to review replays at the MLB Advanced Media offices in New York.

To expand replay, the same process would have to be followed, and the idea hasn't exactly sprinted out of the gate.

Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


“It takes pitching, hitting and defense. Any two can win. All three make you unbeatable.”    
–Joe Garagiola
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