A FULL-SERVICE SPORTS AGENCY
Elite Sports Group, Inc. is a full-service sports agency providing comprehensive services to professional and amateur athletes. With more than 50 years of collec ve experience in the sports management industry, ESG has earned an outstanding reputa on for integrity and honesty. Our extraordinary record of success in contract nego a on, salary arbitra on and career management ranks among the most extensive in the industry. Drawing upon a four-decade history of rela onships with experienced professionals, ESG u lizes a proven network of independent accountants, ﬁnancial advisers, public rela on experts and other professional consultants to serve the broad range of client needs. In addi on, ESG maintains a strategic alliance with an established law ﬁrm with exper se in ﬁnancial planning, real estate transac ons, business transac ons, licensing and endorsement contracts, corporate development, partnership forma on and li ga on services. ESG's decision to remain a selec ve agency beneﬁts each and every client by allowing the staﬀ to oﬀer personal a en on on a 24/7 basis, that larger agencies cannot provide. From the day each client signs a professional contract we are commi ed to helping each player maximize their abili es and reach their ul mate goal of becoming a successful major league player.
Steve Schneider has represented baseball players as an a orney and agent since 1974. An author and lecturer, he is an acknowledged expert in sports law, contract nego a on and baseball arbitra on. For more than 40 years, Steve has represented clients in all areas of real estate, business transac ons and trial ma ers. In addi on to directly represen ng baseball players, for many years Steve represented a number of non-lawyer sports agents and high-proﬁle players as their primary contract nego ator, strategist and presenter of arbitra ons. He also nego ated many free-agent contracts that were the largest of their me. He is one of a select group of a orneys who are recommended by the Major League Baseball Players Associa on as experts in preparing and presen ng baseball arbitra on cases for agents without such experience. Steve regularly serves as an advisor to high school and college athletes and their families, providing counseling and assistance in all aspects of dra analysis, contract evalua on and player presenta on. Steve graduated from UCLA in 1962 with a degree in Poli cal Science and from the UCLA School of Law in 1965. He has been prac cing law as a member of the California State Bar since 1966, and is a principal of the law ﬁrm of Schneider & Warren, Inc. Steve and his wife Sharie live in Sherman Oaks, California, and have two married daughters, Stacy and Jennifer, and ﬁve grandchildren.
A former minor league (Oakland A's) and collegiate (UCLA) player, Ma has a unique understanding of what it takes to play compe vely at the highest levels. Ma pitched for UCLA from 1996 to 1998, where he appeared in 48 games and compiled an 8-3 record with seven saves. He was selected as the Pac-10 pitcher of the week and s ll holds the UCLA record for most College World Series appearances. Before enrolling at UCLA, Ma a ended Santa Ynez High School where his 102 record with a 1.21 ERA helped him earn All-League, All-CIF and All-State (California) honors. Ma signed professionally with the Oakland A's in 1998. His dedica on to the community in his ﬁrst professional season earned him the “Dave Stewart Community Service Award”, which is presented to the Oakland A's minor league player who displays excep onal community service throughout the season.
As a MLBPA Cer ﬁed Agent, Ma serves as an advisor to high school and college athletes and their families. His exper se is a valuable asset in helping athletes transi on from the amateur to the professional ranks. Ma graduated from UCLA in 1998 with a degree in Sociology. He and his family reside in Los Angeles, CA.
Josh has an extensive baseball background in both the United States and Europe. A former NCAA Division I player at Northwestern University, Josh also played independent professional baseball in the Fron er League. He has a unique understanding of the baseball experience in Europe, having played one season as a professional player in the Swedish Elite Series and competed in ﬁve European Championships as a member of the Great Britain na onal team. Oﬀ the ﬁeld, Josh previously worked for Major League Baseball in its London oﬃce and has wri en two books on the history of baseball in Europe. He served as General Manager for South Africa at the 2009 World Baseball Classic and has worked as an on-air analyst, broadcas ng Major League Baseball games on na onal television and radio in Great Britain. He has been highly successful at nego a ng contracts for and represen ng baseball prospects from Europe, South Africa and Australia, including brokering the second largest signing bonus for a posi onal player in European history. A licensed a orney, Josh earned law degrees and graduated with honors from both the University of Arizona and the London School of Economics. He has wri en on baseball legal issues for both the Harvard Nego a on Law Review and the Marque e Sports Law Review.
A graduate of Siena College with a B.S. in Business Marke ng & Management, Kyle's impressive marke ng skills, knowledge of the game, and experience as a Division I baseball player make him a valuable addi on to ESG's team. Prior to enrolling at Siena, Kyle played his prep baseball at the na onal powerhouse, Chatsworth High School, from 2002 - 2006. During these years, Chatsworth earned a back-to-back #1 na onal ranking, four championship games at Dodger Stadium, and two Los Angeles City Championships. He was named Second Team All-City his senior year and received the Chatsworth High School Baseball Award, presented by his high school coaches and school. Kyle regularly serves as an advisor to amateur prospects and families. Addi onally, Kyle focuses on athlete marke ng by linking elite athletes to corporate companies to generate endorsements, product dona on and client awareness for on and oﬀ the ﬁeld products. His success has given ESG's clients more exposure to the public and has generated revenue for clients in other areas oﬀ of the ﬁeld. He also assists and handles daily player opera ons.
For more than 20 years, ESG has advised many of the na on's best collegiate and prep players throughout the amateur dra process. We have represented athletes from top high school and NCAA Division I programs, including Cal State-Fullerton, Florida State, Fresno State, Long Beach State, LSU, Pepperdine, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Texas, University of Arizona, UCLA and USC. ESG has been par cularly successful in a aining signing bonuses well above the MLB-recommended â€œslotâ€? amounts and securing major league contracts. We maintain strong working rela onships with the GMs, scou ng directors and area scouts for all 30 major teams.
In contract nego a ons, the ability to maximize an athleteâ€™s market value is the most cri cal service a sports agent can provide. ESG is an industry leader and a consistent high performer in this ďŹ led. The agency applies substan al industry experience, excep onal legal exper se, a deep knowledge of the market and solid rela onship with the baseball community to ensure that their clients receive top dollar for their services. Since 1975, Steve Schneider, the president and a founder of ESG, has nego ated more than $250 million in baseball and endorsement contracts for professional and amateur athletes - a total that ranks among the highest in the industry. This includes every form of player contract amateur signing, free agent deals and arbitra on eligibles. ESG diligently evaluates each playerâ€™s strengths based upon performance and character. The agency then compares its player to the most favorable industry comparable to present the strongest posi on possible. Our familiarity with the nego a on styles of all 30 major league clubs allows ESG to formulate a plan that will provide the top results. Throughout the process, we make sure that plyers and their families are fully apprised of any marke ng and nego a ng plans. We only implement strategies they fully support.
To succeed in baseball’s unique salary arbitra on system, every player needs a seasoned experienced professional familiar with complicated rules and criteria. ESG has a history of thriving in this world. Between 1975 and 2011, the staﬀ of ESG has represented players in more than 30 salary arbitra on cases. ESG assesses the situa on during every step of the process - well before the player ﬁles, to the exchanging fo salary numbers, to preparing briefs highligh ng a player’s superior performance to arguing in front. of a salary arbitra on panel. Understanding these elements means the agency knows at what point it makes sense to se le a case before it goes to hearing (typically less than 2% of players never reach a hearing) and when it’s best to go to a hearing.
Ron Cey’s victory in 1975. it was one of the earliest arbitra on wins and the only arbitra on victory against the Los Angeles Dodgers un l Fernando Valenzuela in 1983. Bret Saberhagen’s victory in 1986. The 1985 AL Cy Young Award winner receivedf the largest salary percentage increase in baseball arbitra on history ($925,000) Jose Canseco arbitra on se lements in 1989 ($1,600,000) and 1990 ($2,000,000). Dwight Gooden arbitra on se lements in 1986 (1985 NL Cy Young Award) for $1,320,000 and in 1978 for $1,500,000.
ESG is commi ed to providing clients with all the equipment necessary to succeed on the ďŹ eld. The agency has nego ated equipment contracts on behalf of players with every major bag, glove an apparel manufacturer. If an endorsement deal is not readily available for a clientâ€™s preferred brand, we purchase all necessary items for the player. Whether an ESG athlete is looking for Nike cleats, a Rawlings glove or Oakley sunglasses, our goal is to make sure he is ou i ed exactly what he needs.
On ﬁeld performance leads to oﬀ ﬁled opportuni es. ESG maximizes these ﬁnancial rewards by nego a on baseball card contracts with Topps, Upper Deck and other industry leaders and developing commercial, personal appearance and autograph signing opportuni es. The agency has also worked with all forms of media and helps players prepare for TV, radio, print and online interviews and manager social media. ESG knows players have a varying interest in these areas so we are always prepared to work with clients to cra marke ng, publicity and PR plans suitable to their personali es.
Oﬀ-season prepara on is an essen al part of our clients’ professional careers. That is why ESG has established rela onships with a na onal network of elite performance training facili es, trainers, doctors and instructors so ESG athletes can achieve their goals. In addi on to the elements needed to support a top-of-the-line strength and condi oning program, some facili es oﬀer cu ng-edge services including.
Hyperbaric chambers Power plates Simulated high-al tude training & Plates Strength, power, core & ﬂexibility training Speed, agility & quickness training Neurotopia brain training Sensory training systems & eye training Nutri on counseling Sports psychology Physical therapy & massage therapy Indoor ba ng cages & pitching mounds Indoor track
Interna onal players o en move great distances and experiance enormous cultural changes to prusue their baseball dreams. Entering the professional ranks can be an overwhelming experiance for an interna onal player. With decades of experiance assis ng athletes from around the globe, ESG takes great pride in its lengthy track record of helping make this transi on as easy as possible. The agency has represented players from Venezuela, the Dominican Republic, Cuba, Panama and Mexico. Oin recent years, ESG has also emerged as an industry leader in the representa on of players form the non tradi onal baseball areas of Europe, Austrailia and South Africa. ESG is highly experianced in naviga ng the internaional amateur free agency process. Our goal is to vigoroulsy
nego ate deals that represent the highest market value for our players. With rela onships spanning all 30 Major League Baseball clubs, ESG ensures that any interna onal amateur we advise gets the best opportunity to showcase his skills to the greatest number of teams. As a result, we have secured some of the highest signing bonuses in regions from La n American to Europe. In addi on, ESG has exper se in the unique issues facing interna onal players once they sign. These include immigra on law, interna onal tax rules and represen ng one’s country as a na onal team member in the World Baseball Classic and the World Cup. The agency’s goal is the same with every interna onal player. To make sure that even when you are far from home, you have family in the U. S.
Even before Major League teams began heavily cour ng Italian shortstop Marten Gasparini, ESG was working as an advisor for the player and his family. Through Marten’s excellent play and tools and ESG;s persistent marke ng, he emerged as a top prospect in the 2013 interna onal market. ESG not only nego ated the largest processional signing bonus for a European play (he signed with the Kansas City Royals), but the deal also surpassed the previous record by nearly 70 percent. In addi on, it was the ﬁrst seven-ﬁgure signing bonus ever brokered for a European.