MILWAUKEE -- It's not the GM Meetings -- or, next month, the bigger stake of the Winter Meetings -- until super agent Scott Boras holds court in the middle of the hotel lobby.
That took place just a short time ago, with Boras answering questions about the just-about-complete collective bargaining agreement, and his numerous free agents, led by first baseman Prince Fielder.
Fielder, of course, isn't a fit for the Red Sox, thanks to their acquisition of Adrian Gonzalez.
But Boras does have one client at a position where the Red Sox are looking for help: closer (Ryan Madson). Also, outfielder Carlos Beltran, was a Boras client until very recently before switching agents.
He's now represented by Dan Lozano.
On Madson: "Certainly Ryan's season and where Ryan is at in his career, he's far more proven in the closer position (than current Red Sox set-up man Daniel Bard). He's pitched in big games and done really, really well in the postseason, all of which lends well to playoff-
It's hard to see Madson landing with the Sox, however. Madson had an agreement in principle -- or very nearly so -- with the Phillies on a four-year deal for 42 million that fell apart, leading the Phils to turn their attention to Jonathan Papelbon.
The Phils gave Papelbon a four-year 50 million deal, leaving Madson, for the moment, on the outside.
But after not even making an offer to Papelbon, would it make sense for the Sox to make a multiyear offer for Madson?
After all, if the Sox weren't willing to commit multiple years to Papelbon -- because of concerns about the volatility of closers in their 30s -- why would they do so with Madson?
They knew Papelbon and knew he could handle Boston. Madson is the same age as Papelbon (31), but hasn't closed for nearly as long and isn't as established.
Of course, if the market dries up for Madson in the aftermath of the Phils' switch, then maybe he'd be available for a shorter-term deal.
On Beltran: "I think the quality for any middle-of-the-lineup player is going to be good. It's going to very good. There's just not a lot of guys that can perform like that.''
At the trade deadline, when he was shipped from the New York Mets to the San Francisco Giants for top pitching prospect Zack Wheeler, Beltran said his preference was to remain in the National League -- where he's played since 2004 -- out of fear that American League teams might want him to DH.
"That's something you'll have to ask him about," said Boras.
Beltran is a switch-hitter, which the Sox would welcome given that every outfielder of consequence they have -- Carl Crawford, Jacoby Ellsbury, Ryan Kalish and Josh Reddick -- hits left-handed.