"Right now, things are swinging back towards the Dodgers probably," Paul Kinzer said.
This time, it seems Kinzer meant what he said.
By late afternoon, Braves officials were conceding that they won't be signing Furcal, despite what they thought was an agreement reached late Monday night. Kinzer insists that he never agreed to a deal with the Braves.
Tuesday, he went back to the Dodgers, asking them to match the Braves deal: three guaranteed years, with a vesting option, with a chance to make about $40 million.
Dodgers general manager Ned Colletti was open to matching it, according to sources, but he needed a final OK from owner Frank McCourt.
The Braves were so certain that they had a deal that they told some people that Furcal would be in Atlanta today for a physical.
Asked how the Braves could have become convinced they had a deal, Kinzer responded: "You'll have to ask them. They never received any signed documents, or anything. . . . I'm sorry if they were embarrassed. They know we didn't have a signed contract, and we didn't have a verbal agreement."
Kinzer, who was in New York for the Mets' Francisco Rodriguez press conference, said that Furcal was still home in the Dominican Republic.
Kinzer said that Furcal liked both the Braves and Dodgers, but that he preferred to play shortstop rather than second base. The Dodgers wanted him as a shortstop; the Braves planned to play him at second, with Yunel Escobar remaining at shortstop, and Kelly Johnson moving from second base to left field.
"There's nobody else (other than the Braves) that he would have even considered switching positions for," Kinzer said.
One person who knows Furcal said he believes Furcal preferred all along to remain with the Dodgers, and also agreed that Furcal would like to remain at shortstop. But Furcal would apparently sign with the Braves if the Dodgers aren't willing to guarantee the third year of the deal.
Kinzer, interestingly enough, makes his home in the Atlanta area. He said that after news of Furcal's apparent signing with the Braves broke on Tuesday morning, he received 50 phone calls from Braves fans. He said he told them that there was still no deal.