Sheffield: "That's Business"

<B>Gary Sheffield</B> knows a thing or two about the business of Baseball. After dismissing his agent Scott Boras, Sheffield is ready to represent himself as a Free Agent his offseason. Will he be back with Atlanta? Read on to see what Gary has to say about his contractual situation.

Every time Gary Sheffield has said he's not going to talk about his next contract, something unfortunate has come of it.

Early in the season, a reporter asking him about loyalty in baseball instigated a full-blown incident.

"Basically," Sheffield said at the time, "he was talking about teams being loyal to me, so I started back to when I was 18, to Milwaukee, the loyalty there. They had a contract on the table for $7 million at the time and they pulled it off the table. And that's when the loyalty and the trust started leaving. You know, believing what people tell me.

"Same thing with the Dodgers. They approached me about a contract, they took it off the table, and then I became the bad guy. And I said loyalty is when you get it, you give it back. And until I get it, you're not going to get loyalty.

"But I'm going to continue to go out there and play hard. That's what you're going to get. You're going to get a guy that's going to go out here and put it on the line every day. When I'm in my situation where I know where I'm going to be playing, then this is where I'm going to be." Then in April, Sheffield decided he didn't need agent Scott Boras representing him, taking a percentage of his next contract, whatever and wherever it ends up being.

"That's business," Sheffield said, the irony of the loyalty situation being lost on him. Sheffield reasons that this next contract will be his last, and he thinks he knows which teams will need him and which will be willing and able to pay for his services.

Veteran Braves know that general manager John Schuerholz absolutely, positively does not discuss contracts publicly. But because Sheffield talked, we know that the Braves never considered a contract extension, preferring to see how the rest of the season played out. That's the kind of thing Sheffield takes personally even though it clearly is the most practical and sensible way to do business.

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