Solomon Torres wants to be traded from the Pittsburgh Pirates. He says they lied to him when the two sides negotiated Torres’ contract this spring. It’s all very complicated, really. Torres says the Pirates renegged on a promise to invest in one of his Dominican baseball academies. The Pirates say they never promised anything. It’s a mess.
But if there’s one lesson that we can take away from Torres’ story, it’s this: Torres acted as his own agent when he negotiated his contract, and players should never, ever, act as their own agent.
Another player who has acted as his own agent is Curt Schilling, who asked the Red Sox for a $13 million contract extension at the beginning of the season. The team said no. Now Schill is on the DL with shoulder soreness he says reminds him of how felt right before his last major shoulder surgery. Will he get his $13 million? Don’t hold your breath.
It’s certainly noble that players are willing to cut out the middle man, to try and negotiate with teams in a straightforward fashion. But the MLB players union should tell rookies two things at their orientation: 1. Never walk into a courtroom without a lawyer and 2. Never negotiate a contract without an agent. These rules should never be broken.