Just like that, baseball feels re-energized.
A professional sport must use its offseason, free of the skirmishes and controversies that emanate from physical competition, to boost its brand. The positive energy Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving and Kawhi Leonard created last July helps the NBA endure current in-season malaises like “load management” and declining TV ratings.
Baseball’s two previous Hot Stove campaigns proved nothing short of brutal, a seemingly endless wait for moves to get done — the biggest ones did only after spring training opened — that flamed tensions between the players and owners. Even as those tensions remain tangible behind the scenes, the massive transactions completed this past week, and those that preceded the winter meetings, have relegated such labor strife to the background.
Mark it as a big win for baseball. Of course, within the baseball community, you have your winter meetings winners and losers, the definitive version of which you have stumbled into right here:
1. Scott Boras. The super agent — his shine dented the past couple of years as high-profile clients such as Jake Arrieta, Dallas Keuchel and Mike Moustakas (twice) fell…