MLB Players Sports Agents Sports Law

Baseball Agent Bob Garber Sues Merrill Lynch For Pushing J.D. Martinez To Scott Boras

Bob Garber baseball

Baseball agent Robert Garber has filed a lawsuit against Merrill Lynch and its employee Bruce Lee. The Complaint, filed in Illinois, seeks compensation in an amount above $50,000 based on counts of tortious interference with contractual relations.

Garber, who serves as President of RMG Sports Group, has represented the likes of Roy Oswalt, Craig Gentry, C.J. Wilson and J.D. Martinez. It is Garber’s representation of Martinez that serves as the subject of the dispute.

Garber complains that Bruce Lee tortiously interfered with the representation agreement between Garber and Martinez. He says that Lee told Martinez to terminate his contractual relationship with Garber and that he should sign with Scott Boras instead.

Lee allegedly called Garber a hack and told Martinez that Garber would sell him short. To make matters worse, Garber says that Lee was a family friend and that Garber has personally invested with Lee.

Martinez ultimately fired Garber and signed with Boras. In February 2018, Martinez signed a $110 million deal with the Boston Red Sox. Boras will receive the commission on that deal instead of Garber, who says he was wronged of his 5% commission.

By Darren Heitner

Darren Heitner created Sports Agent Blog as a New Year's Resolution on December 31, 2005. Originally titled, "I Want To Be A Sports Agent," the website was founded with the intention of causing Heitner to learn more about the profession that he wanted to join, meet reputable individuals in the space and force himself to stay on top of the latest news and trends.

Heitner now runs Heitner Legal, P.L.L.C., which is a law firm with many practice areas, including sports law and contract law. Heitner has represented numerous athletes and sports agents as legal counsel. He has also served as an Adjunct Professor at Indiana University Bloomington from 2011-2014, where he created and taught a course titled, Sport Agency Management, which included subjects ranging from NCAA regulations to athlete agent certification and the rules governing the profession. Heitner serves as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law, where he teaches a Sports Law class that includes case law surrounding athlete agents and the NCAA rules.