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A-Rod Signs With William Morris Agency

  The William Morris Agency LLC bolstered its sports management business Tuesday by signing Alex Rodriguez as a client. The deal is an attempt by the Yankee slugger to extend his brand beyond the baseball diamond.

   The deal was completed this month and set up by Rodriguez’s manager, Guy Oseary, a music business mogul who has worked closely with the Beverly Hills-based talent agency.

   “Surrounding Alex with the right team is imperative to reaching our goals,” Oseary said in a statement released Tuesday by William Morris. “We are delighted to have William Morris as a part of our team.”

   The agency’s focus will be on securing endorsements with select companies and creating business development opportunities in the form of joint ventures and strategic partnerships in the U.S. and worldwide.

   Rodriguez endorses PepsiCo Inc., Nike Inc., Oasys Mobile Inc., a closely held software maker for mobile phones, Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc. and the Topps Company Inc., which makes baseball cards, according to his Web site.

   “Partnering with William Morris will enable me to broaden the scope of my career in creative and innovative ways,” said Rodriguez. “I’m excited to see what we will be able to accomplish together, both domestically and abroad.”

   Other William Morris clients include National Basketball Association players Dwyane Wade and Kevin Garnett, National Football League quarterback Vince Young, racecar driver Juan Pablo Montoya, tennis player Serena Williams and golfer Michelle Wie. The agency also works with the National Football League and the National Hockey League.

   Rodriguez’s decision to join William Morris comes at a time when he is now a staple of celebrity gossip. On July 7, his wife filed for divorce in Florida and his relationship with Madonna has generated blaring tabloid headlines and daily fodder for talk-show radio. 

   The 32-year-old third baseman has 538 home runs and is on pace to pass Barry Bonds on the career list. He is drawing a major league-high $27 million salary this year and last December signed a record $275 million, 10-year contract with New York. The deal that allows him to make up to $305 million if he reaches certain milestones.

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