Bryce Harper reportedly ‘unsure’ about joining Phillies
With Manny Machado reportedly set to sign a 10-year, $300 million deal with the San Diego Padres, the next domino expected to fall in the MLB’s protracted free-agency saga is Bryce Harper.
While anything could happen on the Harper front, either imminently or otherwise, the superstar slugger reportedly is not fully committed to signing with the team believed to be the front-runner in his free-agency sweepstakes.
SNY’s Andy Martino reports Tuesday that Harper is “unsure” about joining the Philadelphia Phillies.
Have been hearing lately Bryce Harper unsure about Philly. They'd better convince him for their sake.— Andy Martino (@martinonyc) February 19, 2019
The Philadelphia Phillies were said to be the “heavy favorite” to sign Harper as recently as a few weeks ago, as he and Phillies skipper Gabe Kapler reportedly “hit it off” during a meeting last month.
The San Francisco Giants were believed to be “making a late play” to sign Harper, but nothing so far has materialized. Eight teams were also reportedly checking in on Harper, which presumably includes a reported handful of “mystery teams” working behind the scenes. Again, nothing much has come of these rampant rumors.
Harper’s former team, the Washington Nationals, suspected to be no longer pursuing him, reportedly remain in the hunt. The Padres, meanwhile, are expected to no longer pursue Harper after landing Machado.
Harper reportedly is still seeking a $300 million contract, and given the Machado signing, chances are good the 26-year-old will land the deal he seeks.
A report over the weekend indicated Harper has “multiple long-term offers” in excess of $30 million per year, so a 10-year offer obviously would need to be extended by some team for Harper to reach his purported contract goals.
It will be interesting to see how the Machado signing impacts Harper’s free-agency saga, although given how bizarre things have been this past offseason, anything and everything could happen.