Timing is Everything

Last night uber agent Scott Boras and uber hitter/free agent Alex Rodriquez (for whom it is both always about the bucks) gave us all a text book case on how NOT to do conduct PR, media relations, fan relations, call it what you will. The message, the medium and timing were WRONG, WRONG, WRONG. Team Greed set a new low water by proclaiming during the Game Four of the World Series that A-Rod was opting out of his current (and HUGE) contract with the Yankees. So much for Yankee Pride. In our little world of technology marketing for start ups, it was mildly reminiscent of Mike Arrington’s announcement of the TechCrunch 40 conference, which he made at DEMO in February. Some would say smart, strategic or even ballsy, others would characterize it as classless.

Before last night there might have been legitimate 4-5 suitors (Yanks, Sox, Cubs, Angels and Dodgers) for A-Rod given his salary demands. It says here that last night when A-Rod told the Yankees, “thanks but not thanks”, he also could have inadvertently severed any ties with Boston by trying to upstage their second World Series championship in the past three years. Ultimately this could come back to bite Boras and Boorish (A-Rod) but someone (LAD or LAA or the Cubs) will get sucked in by his awesome regular season numbers and pay the King’s ransom for his services.

The Red Sox are a team and an organization that has mastered the art of PR and media relations since John Henry and the new ownership group took over a few years ago. Henry, Tom Werner, Larry Lucchino and Theo Epstein should do the exact opposite of Boras and A-Rod. They should simultaneously announce this week that they are NOT negotiating with A-Rod and in fact, have inked their own free agent third baseman and 2008 Series MVP Mike Lowell to a fair and well deserved contact extension.

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