Monday, July 18, 2005

Review: License to Deal by Jerry Crasnick

Here is another review of a non-gambling baseball book.

Review: License to Deal by Jerry Crasnick

License to Deal by Jerry Crasnick is sub-titled “A Season on the Run with a Maverick Baseball Agent”. The agent is Matt Sosnick, whose most famous client is Dontrelle Willis of the Florida Marlins. Crasnick paints Sosnick and his partner Paul Cobbe as good people and friends to their clients. All this in a field of sharks and wolves. Sosnick and Cobbe routinely try to keep their own clients from abandoning and jumping to other agents while the players are still in the minors or just starting out their careers in the majors. Crasnick makes Sosnick look like the victim. But as Crasnick shows (although he never explicitly states it), Sosnick-Cobbe have their own moments where they are rude, arrogant, aggressive and steal other agents’ clients as well. The bottom line is this is a cut throat business and either all agents are victims or none of them are, because they all get screwed and all try to screw others too. Crasnick also writes about other agents and baseball deals in the book. There is a whole chapter on Scott Boras, as well as many other anecdotes and quotes from other agents and baseball management interspersed throughout the book.

Overall, Crasnick does a good job describing the life of agents. The middle-tier ones like Sosnick and Cobbe and the stars like Boras and Moorad (now in management with the Diamondbacks). I recommend this book for those that are interested in the business side of baseball.

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