Probably no one saw my newsworthy tweet on Saturday:
Who was the big winner at the MLB Winter Meanings? Why it was Bubba Sparxxx, who was officially certified as an agent.
— Robert J Baumann (@RobertJBaumann) December 15, 2013
It’s official (in the magical NotReality of NotGraphs, at least): Sparxxx has followed in Jay-Z’s footsteps as rap-star-turned-sports-agent. Sparxxx stated in a recent email to NotGraphs:
With the recent mega-contract for Robinson Cano orchestrated in part by Jay-Z and his Roc Nation Sports, along with current “rap style” hits by Major League Baseball players such as [Cleveland Indians right-hander] Trevor Bauer (“Gutter to the Grail”), one would think that the crossover between rap/hip-hop and professional sports is a new one. But if you are a true music and sports historian, you would recall that this interdisciplinary movement actual began in 1995 when, as a high school senior, I was a burgeoning rapper while also being an All-Region tight end and linebacker in LaGrange [Georgia]. The video for the first single on my debut album Dark Days, Bright Nights featured me and some pals in the mud with the ol’ pigskin, racing tractors, and performing at night on a baseball field illuminated by bug lights. If that’s not the epitome of the rap-sports connection, then nothing is. Furthermore, I have always been a player, now I just represent them, too.
The fact that Jay-Z’s first client was the high-profile Cano (who was set to be the top free agent on the market this winter) set a high bar for Sparxxx and his Bright Nights Sports, but considering that Sparxxx lacks the vast cultural clout of Jay-Z, his current clientele of the aforementioned Bauer, Red Sox first baseman Mike Napoli, and free agent right-hander Bronson Arroyo is nothing at which to sneeze (if one is in the habit of sneezing in the direction of insignificant things, that is).
“Bright Night Sports will seek to represent players who have ambitions outside of sports, after sports,” Brody Railton, a spokesperson for Bright Nights, revealed in a statement separate from the email Sparxxx sent to NotGraphs. “The agency will be dedicated to developing and promoting all the talents of its clients, not just those talents associated with athletics.”
Bauer and Arroyo both have what Railton termed “a certain musical dynamism” that will present them with “interesting opportunities” after baseball. Arroyo has indicated that he also intends to engage in culinary pursuits after his baseball playing career is over. “Whether we’re working to get Bronson situated with a top-notch culinary institute or helping him to establish his own line of quality cookware,” Railton’s statement continued, “Bright Night Sports will provide him — and all of its clients — with highly personalized representation suited to his unique ambitions.”
While the relationships with Bauer and Arroyo are clear enough, neither the statement by Railton nor the email from Sparxxx explained how Mike Napoli fits in with the Bright Nights mission. Superficially, however, the pairing seems natural enough, as both Napoli and Sparxxx are both pudgy white guys from southern states who have a connection to the pornography industry: Sparxxx “collaborated” with the Girls Gone Wild brand on his 2006 “Charmed Life Tour”, while Napoli has philandered with adult film actress Rachel Starr (whose twitter handle, perhaps not coincidentally, is @rachelstarrxxx).
With official agent certification from MLBPA, a solid clientele that also includes Royals minor leaguer Bubba Starling (duh), and a focused longterm business model, Bubba Sparxxx and Bright Night Sports are perhaps the biggest winners at this years Winter Meetings.
Print This Post