Catching up with Matt Sosnick

It’s been a banner off-season for the Sosnick-Cobbe Sports representation firm. With two big extensions for some emerging stars in Jay Bruce and Ricky Nolasco and the (possible) extensions for Freddy Sanchez and Josh Willingham.  Agent Matt Sosnick was kind enough to take a few questions from me via email.

IIATMS: Jay Bruce is clearly one of MLB’s rising young stars. What’s your thoughts on him locking up a multi-year deal now when he could very easily earn a great deal more through the arbitration process and into free agency? Who leads this process, you or the player?

  • Matt SosnickWhen a player has ability that merits a multi-year deal, we sit down with him to discuss the pros and cons. The nature of these deals is that the player almost always leaves some money on the table in exchange for the security of a guarantee. Jay is a pretty conservative guy, so in his case he was able to get a guaranteed deal for more than he could ever spend, while still being young enough (30) when the deal expires to obtain one or two more big contracts. Ultimately it is the player’s decision. Our role is to inform him of what he would make if he went year-to-year, what the risks are, and how much we can get him on a multi-year so that he can make an educated decision.

IIATMS: You and your firm have been proponents of these pre-free agency extenstions. Do you recommend this course for all of your players?

  • MS: Our general philosophy is that if a player can get an early multi-year contract that guarantees him enough money to be set for life, he needs to at least consider it. Baseball careers can be cut short in the blink of an eye, and most players understand that. It’s not so much a matter of what we recommend as a matter of presenting the player with his various options and letting him make an informed decision.

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Agent Sosnick sits down for a chat

Good friend of IIATMS and all-around good guy Matt Sosnick joined another e-migo Clint at Diamond Hoggers for a chat. Have a listen here. Sosnick talks about why he picked baseball as a focus despite him being a football fan, alot about clients Jay Bruce, Dontrelle Willis, Josh Willingham, Ricky Nolasco, etc. Definitely worth a listen.

I remain eternally grateful for Matt’s contributions to this site via interviews with him and his clients. Behind the scenes, he’s been even better, unfailingly responding to requests for memorabilia for charitible fund raising activities or just general counsel about this great game. Continue reading Agent Sosnick sits down for a chat

An Interview with Matt Sosnick

An interview with Matt Sosnick

I was recently privileged to spend some time with professional baseball agent Matt Sosnick of Sosnick-Cobbe Sports. Matt Sosnick was the subject of ESPN analyst/writer Jerry Crasnick’s bookLicense to Deal: A Season on the Run with a Maverick Baseball Agent” (published in 2005). Sosnick’s current roster of MLB players include Dontrelle Willis, Josh Willingham, Darrell Rasner, Freddy Sanchez and the hottest rookie on the planet, Jay Bruce. Sosnick’s name was in the news recently as he was Josh Hamilton’s agent until a few weeks back, a story which I covered here. Matt was kind enough to chat with me about the business of being an agent, the Hamilton situation, Mark Cuban, collusion, integrity and how his mom found my blog.

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Continue reading An Interview with Matt Sosnick

More Sosnick, Bruce-Almighty style

With a very real fear of me sounding like a Sosnick-Cobbe shill, take a read:

Recent Jay Bruce Blog on Yardbarker.com.

Importance of agents

submitted by JayBruce on February 13, 2008

What’s up everyone? Sorry I haven’t been writing too often lately but I’ve been busy with traveling and getting down to Florida. Today, being that spring training is about to start I’m going to write a little about the importance of my agent, Matt Sosnick. Having a reliable agent means everything when it comes to taking the pressure off of yourself and just making life much easier for you during both the season and the offseason. I can call Matt about anything imaginable and he will help me out with it. A few months before the draft back in 2005, I was with the Boras agency. All that I had heard about them was great things, and seeing some of the players they had was an attraction from the start. After a while things weren’t working out too well between us, for no other reason than the difference in opinions we had about certain things. The Boras corporation is great for certain people, just not for me. When I switched over to Sosnick Cobbe, I saw the immediate differences I was looking for in an agent. They treat everyone in the company like family, and they are there for anything I need. I feel very strongly about this agency and its presence in the baseball world for many years to come. You guys should check out the website and learn a little more about the agency and the players that are represented.

Continue reading More Sosnick, Bruce-Almighty style

*UPDATED* BREAKING: Josh Rogers (Yankees 11th round pick) agrees to terms

Josh RogersAccording to a source close to the Yankees, 11th round pick Josh Rogers (Twitter) has agreed to terms with the New York Yankees for $485K, plus additional scholarship money. Rogers is scheduled to take a physical early this coming week (Monday or Tuesday). This figure represents the highest amount the team can offer Rogers, and is well above-slot for an 11th rounder.

The issue is that James Kaprielian, who was selected 16th in the first round, remains unsigned. Kaprielian is represented by Scott Boras, who is known to demand above-slot figures for his players. However, given the figure signed by Rogers, the Yanks must feel confident in their ability to sign Kaprielian for at/near slot figures (~$2.5M).

The signing deadline is this coming Friday, July 18th.

Baseball America described Rogers:

At 6-foot-3, 200 pounds, Rogers has a near ideal pitcher’s build. He locates his 87-91 mph fastball, mixes in a slider that flashes average at his best and below-average at other times and a usable changeup. Rogers’ mix of three pitches and an ability to locate them makes him a potential back-end starter.

h/t to Jim Callis for the slot figures. Continue reading *UPDATED* BREAKING: Josh Rogers (Yankees 11th round pick) agrees to terms

Jay Bruce on choosing his agent

Longtime readers of IIATMS know my equally long-standing appreciation and friendship that I have for agent Matt Sosnick and his agency. It’s with no shame that I can say that if there is one person who helped (unwittingly, mind you) launch my site from a bitty blogspot destination, it’s Matt.

To refresh: I was bored on June 2, 2008, desperately searching for something to write about. So I quickly threw this on the screen. So thanks to a random posting about Josh Hamilton, a fortuitious coincidence with a John Heyman news and notes story an hour later, and a Google alert, I connected with Matt. That lead to interviews with him, his players and other sorts of things that I remain eternally grateful for, things he never needed to do but did anyway because that’s exactly the kind of guy he is. I’ve been very fortunate that this little writing outlet of mine has put me in contact with some truly great people. Matt is at the very front of the line. That interview with Matt gave me my first ever ESPN link. The rest, friends, is history.

Naturally, when my RSS reader refreshed and Tim Dierkes’ posting about why Jay Bruce chose his agent, I jumped, compelled to share it. Am I biased? Damn straight. Sue me.

Here’s my favorite portion, but please head over to MLBTR and read the whole thing yourself:

He made me feel like I was a priority. Matt was on the phone and made it an easy decision for me, and that was the true start of what I consider a great relationship both on and off the field. That showed how Matt is as a person. That means a lot to me. He takes a genuine interest in my family and really goes beyond the job description. That’s important to me, but it’s not important to some people and I completely respect that. I really value my relationship with Matt, and he’s also done a great job, so it works out. I definitely understand that if he didn’t do a great job for me and we were friends, it would be a little tougher to move on or even have that conversation. I consider him a friend, but he does an unbelievable job with contract negotiations.

Continue reading Jay Bruce on choosing his agent

Rob Neyer to leave ESPN

“Neyer joined ESPN.com in 1996, and since then he’s written more words for this site than anybody.”

– Neyer’s ESPN.com bio

The news is finally out: Rob Neyer is ending his 15 year run at ESPN:

Today, I hand off this space to whoever’s next. I don’t know yet who is next, but I’m highly confident that this blog and the SweetSpot Network will soon be in excellent hands.

I’ve known about this move for about a week or so now and despite this, I am still a bit slackjawed. Like most of you, I began reading Rob daily back when he started with ESPN so many years ago. I’ve pretty much read everything he’s written. I, and others, haven’t always agreed with everything, but say this about the man: he’s fair and he’s thoughtful.

Rob was among the first, if not the first, to bring sports blogging into the mainstream. For that, we should all be grateful for his contributions to the MLB community. I know I am.

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Discussion: Rooting For The Uniform?

Yesterday’s Bobby Jenks – Oney Guillen brouhaha spurred some discussion about Jenks’ character, and brought a 2005 ESPN article about Jenks and his upbringing to my attention. The article suggests that Jenks is lacking in terms of intelligence, and that he is a “backwoods” guy with a drinking problem. The following anecdote caught my eye: His ex-agent says Bobby Jenks used to call him D.J., short for Dirty Jew. The agent says Bobby would say it casually on phone messages — “Call me back, D.J.” — and while Bobby denies it, it’s a window into the mystery of a backwoods Continue reading Discussion: Rooting For The Uniform?

Hamilton’s looking for an extension; remember this discussion?

Josh Hamilton is looking for an extension.

Now, this in-and-of-itself isn’t really major news, but for me, it launches me back to 2008 and the singular posting that help me really get started with this website. It opened the first set of door for me. Why, because in June of 2008, I first noticed that Josh Hamilton was “celebrating” his anniversary from being drafted first overall by the Rays in 2009. Purely coincidential, later that morning there was a buried tidbit that Hamilton dumped his agent, as he was about to sign an extension. That he dumped his agent wasn’t the troublesome news to me, but his rationale bothered me:

Josh Hamilton’s negotiations for a long-term deal may be held up a little by his decision to switch agents during negotiations that appeared to be progressing. Hamilton, a born-again Christian after returning from bouts with his drug addiction, explained to friends that he wanted to be with a Christian stable, so he switched agents from Matt Sosnick to Michael Moye as he seemed to be closing in on a long contract.

To dump your agent at the doorstep of an multi-million dollar extension is bad enough; but to do it because of a religious epiphany bothered me. But I’m thrilled that Hamilton righted his life and seemed to emerge as the player most scouts expected to see when he was drafted.

Sosnick and I spoke shortly after that posting and has become as good an e-migo as I’ve met while doing this website thing. That Hamilton/Sosnick posting gave me my first Rob Neyer/ESPN link. Funny how things work, eh?

Oh and that extension that Sosnick was working towards: never signed. Continue reading Hamilton’s looking for an extension; remember this discussion?