Agent Scott Boras has not always been a fan of the way the Indians do business. A couple of years ago, he called them a developmental team. In November at the General Managers' meetings, he questioned the desire of ownership to put a winning team on the field.
He sensed a shift in direction in December at the winter meetings in Nashville. Three things tipped him off.
First, President Mark Shapiro and GM Chris Antonetti visited Boras at the same time during the meetings. Boras' high-profile clients have been out of the Indians' price range for years, so that left an impression.
"We talked for two hours about ownership and what their plan was," said Boras.
Second, there was the hiring of Terry Francona as manager.
"We've sent a lot of players to Boston [when Francona managed there] and had great success," said Boras. "Seven or eight of my clients have gotten rings with Tito. I can tell players things about him that are important for players to hear."
Finally came the mark of true interest. Once the meetings ended, the Indians kept calling.
"The old story is when you go to meetings and you talk, it's about how teamsfollow up," said Boras. "Chris was very diligent. We've in the business together for a long time. I've talked to him as much in four months as I have collectively in seven years."
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