Bryce Harper rejected contract offer from Nationals
Bryce Harper rejected contract offer from Nationals
Bryce Harper Getty Images
09 November, 2018, 19:40
It was reported Wednesday that Bryce Harper turned down a 10-year, $300 million contract offer from the Washington Nationals, the team's seemingly final attempt to keep him from exploring the free agent market.
It gained even more traction earlier this week when Harper's agent, Scott Boras, toldMLB Network Radio that the 26-year-old right fielder would be a more-than-capable first baseman. As Nightengale notes, the Nationals were thought to be able to retain Harper up until that report.
However, his quick rejection of the deal doesn't exactly inspire hope he'll be returning to Washington.
Without casting doubt on any of these reports, it's important to remember how quickly things can change in free-agency, especially as we approach the Winter Meetings, which will begin on December 9 in Harper's hometown of Las Vegas.
In order to afford Harper, the Yankees might have to explore the option of dealing Stanton, who has a no-trade clause.
The total worth of Harper's next contract will largely be determined by its length, but the six-time All-Star is expected to ink a deal worth at least $31 million per year, according to Spotrac. But if they do, it nearly certainly won't be that deal, and Washington's general manager and president of baseball operations Mike Rizzo acknowledged on Tuesday that his team can not afford to wait around for the right-fielder to make his decision.
"I'm comfortable with the alternative (to signing Harper)", Rizzo said Tuesday. "But I'm uncomfortable with the statement that we're a better team without him".
It's on all of us that we didn't see "Harper's bazaar" coming from a thousand miles away. His clients include Nationals pitchers Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg, and former Nats outfielder Jayson Werth.
Given Harper's history with the Nationals, he seems unlikely to make a deal elsewhere without first circling back.
Boras did not counter, but word is the Nationals would go higher for a reasonable offer - though how much higher remains to be seen. The Nationals were willing to make a strong commitment.
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