The Athletic Reporter
September 12, 2005 Sports News the Way You Want It. Completely Made Up. Issue 127
 
Steinbrenner Signs Agassi Away From Red Sox Despite Front Office Misgivings
Originally posted 3/29/2004

Newest Yankees shortstop Andre Agassi
NEW YORK - According to Yankees owner and notorious spendthrift George Steinbrenner, the Bronx Bombers won yet another battle with the rival Red Sox over the weekend, signing Andre Agassi away from Boston and into Yankee pinstripes.

Despite objections from Yankees front office staff, Steinbrenner signed the tennis pro to a three-year, $50 million contract on the strength of Agassi's performance as Red Sox shortstop in a series of Nike shoe commercials featuring athletes participating sports other than those that made them famous.

"We begged George not to do this," said Yankees GM Brian Cashman. "We sat him down and tried to explain that it was just a commercial, it wasn't real, Andre Agassi doesn't really play for the Red Sox. He just wouldn't listen."

"Brian Cashman told me all this stuff about Agassi not really being a baseball player," Steinbrenner said. "I think he was just worried that we've already got two All Star shortstops [Derek Jeter and Alex Rodriguez, who moved to third base after being acquired by the Yankees] on the team, and he didn't want me to fork over all of that money for another one."

"Hey, everybody, please, don't say anything to George," said Agassi at a press conference to announce his signing with the Yankees. "Do you have any idea how much he's paying me? At my age, I'm not going to make that kind of money playing tennis anymore. So just be cool."

"George called me up and told me about it last night," said Yankees manager Joe Torre. "After about an hour-and-a-half of him insisting that he wasn't just joking around, I started to believe he was actually serious. Turns out he was. I don't know what we're going to do about it. He said he thinks I ought to move Jeter to second base so Andre can play short."

"Of course," said Steinbrenner, "the Red Sox staff begged me not to steal away their best player. They even tried to tell me that Agassi had never been on their roster, and that the highlight from the Nike ad I saw was just special effects. That's what they told me: 'It was just special effects, like in the movies.' Do you believe that? What sort of an idiot do those people take me for? This wasn't a movie, it was a commercial. Movies are fake, commercials are real."

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