Boras: 'I can’t even think about the Baltimore Orioles without Manny Machado for 2018'

Super agent Scott Boras held his annual winter meetings media scrum Wednesday morning and touched on several topics, including the values of his top free-agent clients such as former Orioles pitcher Jake Arrieta and slugger J.D. Martinez. He called the Miami Marlins a “pawn shop” for their offseason dismantling and compared the New York Yankees to the “Tiffany’s” of jewelers for their opportunistic attempt in acquiring Giancarlo Stanton.

But Boras doesn’t see the Orioles trading cornerstone third baseman Manny Machado in this offseason, predicting Machado plays out his final year before free agency with the Orioles.

“Manny Machado is one of the greatest hitters of our time,” said Boras, who does not represent Machado. “He has an amazing gift. And you know about players of that caliber, when their time comes and there’s a choice applied to them, there’s going to be a marshaling of what the organization’s best interest is, what the player’s best interest is.

“Normally that results in the player playing out his time with his team because it’s very difficult to look at a player at that level and give a club a value point for someone who is so gifted knowing you only get him for one year, so historically that would be a difficult process. I can’t even think about the Baltimore Orioles without Manny Machado for 2018 because I think he’s just a principal part of their winning. I know from my conversations with Dan [Duquette] and Peter [Angelos], they have every intention of continuing with him.”

Boras also said he’s talked to the Orioles this week about closer Zach Britton, who is one of his clients and is also eligible for free agency after next season. And Boras didn’t get the sense that the Orioles would deal Britton either.

"From everything we know, they covet Zach and want him to be with their club," Boras said.

Boras also chimed in on former Orioles slugger Pedro Álvarez, lauding his professionalism by going to Triple-A Norfolk last year to re-establish interest in him. In the same forum last year, Boras boasted that Álvarez would show clubs that he could play the outfield, an experiment the Orioles tried to limited success after signing the 2008 first-round draft pick to a minor league deal during spring training.

“I don’t think anyone questions his power or skill,” Boras said. “He went down to Triple-A at 29 years old and paid the price, rebooted his career. He made the Triple-A All-Star team, came back up to Baltimore and hit well. So I think he provided them a clear vision that he has 35-home-run power and I think he had the acumen to play first base, which was the unknown before.”

eencina@baltsun.com

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