Reversal of fortune? Lee changes mind on Boras

Updated: August 24, 2006, 11:55 AM ET
By Jerry Crasnick |

Carlos Lee can expect to sign a multiyear contract for at least $60 million when he hits the open market as a free agent this winter.

Left Field
Texas Rangers

128 30 90 81 .348 .292

The question is, which agent is going to collect the commission?

Just a few days after authorizing Scott Boras as his new representative, Lee apparently has changed course. Texas general manager Jon Daniels said the Rangers received a phone call Wednesday informing the club that Lee plans to retain his original agents, Adam Katz and Tom Reich.

Reich, in a phone conversation with Thursday morning, confirmed that Lee is still represented by his group. Lee has been a Reich and Katz client for the past eight years.

Lee's flip-flop sheds light on the issue of agents battling over clients -- an ongoing source of contention -- and could force the Players Association to step in and resolve the matter. Union lawyers Michael Weiner and Gene Orza did not immediately respond to phone messages and e-mails this morning.

Lee, 30, is batting .292 with 30 homers and 90 RBI with Milwaukee and Texas this season. He has 214 home runs and a .493 slugging percentage in eight big-league seasons.

The Brewers sent Lee to the Rangers as part of a six-player trade on July 28 after he turned down a reported four-year, $48 million offer to stay in Milwaukee.

Boras, who has the deepest, most star-studded clientele in baseball, has been busy enhancing it of late.

Oakland's Barry Zito, the top free-agent pitcher on this winter's market, left agent Arn Tellem in July to sign on with Boras' group. The Detroit Free Press reported Wednesday that Tigers shortstop Carlos Guillen recently split with agent Peter Greenberg to become a Boras client.

In an interview late Tuesday night, Boras called Lee a "storied" player and said his group was "real honored" to represent Lee.

"He's a big power guy who's been very durable and consistent," Boras said. "He's basically the type of franchise player that most teams don't have."

Jerry Crasnick covers Major League Baseball for ESPN Insider.

Jerry Crasnick | email MLB Sr. Writer