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December 7, 2011 at 8:37 PM

Prince Fielder’s agent says Seattle “a proven market” with supportive fans who will come out if team wins

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Super-agent Scott Boras made an appearance in front of the media tonight in the hallway of the Hilton Anatole hotel. We were there to show it to you live right here on the blog and many of you took the opportunity to watch as seen by our numbers.
Naturally, the majority of questions were about Prince Fielder. I asked Boras whether he was surprised by the Mariners being in on his client given the team’s perceived payroll limitations.
“Seattle is a place where they’ve drawn 3.5 million fans,” Boras said. “They’re a proven market. Their TV ratings per household are one of the highest in major league baseball. They’re a franchise that, if they are successful, their fans really support the team. It’s that iconic dynamic that we talk about with those franchise players where a competitive team can mean an additional million fans.”
Boras used the example of the Texas Rangers as a club that can boost attendance and revenues by winning.
But the Mariners aren’t a winning team where Fielder is being pursued by clubs that appear a lot closer. I asked him whether it mattered to Fielder if a team was two or even three years away from contending.
“Those are things that Prince and I have to talk about,” Boras said. “He asked me to take an open view and collect all the information here from each club.”
Then, Boras quipped: “I didn’t meet with too many teams that said that they were three years away when they were thinking of signing Prince. That’s not something you hear too often.”
Boras also said he was “surprised in some instances” by the teams that have come to him, given their rosters. He will take the information gathered here back to Fielder and attempt to come up with a shortlist of teams his client wants to pursue further.
Boras said the market for Albert Pujols, who appears close to securing a 10-year deal from the Cardinals. won’t impact his client at all. A report here tonight from the Miami Herald indicated that the Marlins have pulled out of the hunt for Pujols and do not plan a run at Fielder.
“The Pujols negotiation has been a negotiation that’s been ongoing for a good period of time with his club,” Boras said. “I just didn’t feel that negotiation was going to have any relevance to Prince.”


Boras said the Milwaukee Brewers are “part of the process” in the negotiations as Fielder’s former team. But he could not say definitivelty whether he expected the Brewers to make Fielder a formal contract offer.
The Cubs are also expected to make a run at Fielder, but Boras again could not say how serious they are. He did mention that some general managers with new teams still learning about their clubs who may be causing the process to take extra time.
Cubs GM Jed Hoyer — and president Theo Epstein — certainly qualify as being with a new team.
Boras was also asked about the possibility of a shorter three or four-year deal.
“I don’t think any team that has approached us has even suggested that as a possibility.”

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