New York Yankees second baseman Robinson Cano, who is in the final season of a $57 million contract, has left agent Scott Boras to sign with a company founded by Jay-Z.
Roc Nation, an entertainment company founded by Shawn Carter, also known as Jay-Z, announced Tuesday that it is getting into the sports representation business through a partnership with Creative Artists Agency (CAA). This arm of CAA will be known as Roc Nation Sports, which simultaneously announced that its first sports client is Cano.
"At this point in my career, I am ready to take a more active role in my endeavors on and off the field," Cano said in a statement. "I am confident that the pairing of Roc Nation Sports and CAA Sports will be essential in helping me accomplish my short- and long-term goals. I am making this important decision now so I can keep my focus on helping the Yankees succeed in 2013, while minimizing any distractions for me and my teammates."
The Yankees and Boras hadn't spoken in weeks about a new deal, a person with knowledge of the talks told ESPNNewYork.com's Andrew Marchand. The Yankees had made what general manager Brian Cashman termed "a significant offer" during the spring, but Cano had not accepted it. At this point, the Yankees do not have a read on how the move from Boras to Jay-Z will impact future negotiations.
It's not as if the team that will be negotiating for Cano after Boras is inexperienced, like the much-hyped partnership between Ricky Williams and rapper Master P's No Limit Sports, which resulted in one of the worst contracts in sports history. Through Roc Nation Sports, Cano also will be represented by CAA Sports' baseball group, which says it has negotiated $1.1 billion worth of deals, including four contracts (Ryan Braun, Matt Cain, Ryan Zimmerman, Buster Posey) that exceeded $100 million, in the past two years alone. CAA also represents soccer superstars Cristiano Ronaldo and David Beckham.