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Scott Boras willing to consider an extension for Xander Bogaerts

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Could Xander Bogaerts sign an extension with the Boston Red Sox? Yes, but just because Scott Boras is willing to admit that doesn't make it likely.

John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Scott Boras is known for getting his clients top dollar in free agency, but according to Rob Bradford of WEEI, Xander Bogaerts' super-agent hasn't ruled out the possibility of an extension for the young shortstop.

I mention this here because it sounds like news, and will inevitably make the rounds in a big way today, and possibly for the rest of the week. But lest you mistake it for being something real: this means nothing.

Boras is known for his players hitting free agency, yes, but not because he has some strange ideological love for the institution. The fact of the matter is that Boras pushes his players towards free agency because that's where the greatest dollar amounts tend to lie, and for an agent with so many high-value players to his name, the fact of the matter is that Boras doesn't have to weigh risk all that heavily.

Look at it this way: while for a player the difference between a $20 million extension and a $50 million contract in free agency might not actually represent as vast a gap in quality of life as the difference between a $20 million extension and a couple league minimum paydays followed by a career-ending injury, for Boras it's simple math. If that player has a 50% chance of making it to free agency and a 50% chance of everything falling for pieces, the expected value of waiting is (commsion on) $25 million for Boras against $20 million for the extension.

It's an overly simplistic example, but it gives you an idea of why it's so difficult for teams to sign Boras clients to extensions--because the very idea of an extension is to give the player in question a guaranteed lower limit on their career earnings while covering what is ultimately the relatively small risk of catastrophe. It makes sense for many players because of how important those first few million dollars are, but for Boras it comes down to statistics.

This is not a condemnation of Boras' approach, mind. I can't imagine it's what I'd choose were I a baseball player, but for some, it really does come down to top dollar being what's most important. Players who sign with Boras likely know what they're doing and why, and of course, if one does end up wanting to sign an extension, Boras isn't going to tell them no. He works for them, not the other way around.

But at the end of the day all Boras is saying here is that he'll conduct business as usual. If the team wants to offer Xander the world--enough to make that risk-reward calculation balance out--then there's no reason for Boras not to advise Xander to sign. But any extension signed with a Boras client is likely to look a lot closer to the sort of contract you'd expect to come from free agency to begin with. There's a reason these don't get done very often, and it's not because Boras isn't willing to consider them.