Early Rumors On The Bryce Harper Market

Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals

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Getting his deal off the books would not only allow the Yankees to sign Harper and play him every day at first base but would not break the bank should they pursue big-name pitchers to improve their greatest weakness, the starting rotation.

The St. Louis Cardinals almost completed a trade for Giancarlo Stanton and the roughly $300 million he had remaining on his contract past year, leading many to believe they are a realistic landing spot for Bryce Harper this offseason.

Boras tabbed Harper as a "generational" and "iconic" player - citing the Nationals' stark increase in attendance, television ratings and overall franchise value since Harper joined the team.

"Because the player is entering the prime of his career you're really talking about a unique and rare opportunity", Boras said.

Many in the industry believe star outfielder Bryce Harper's final destination for next season will come no sooner than the Winter Meetings in Las Vegas next month.

According to ESPN, Boras "all but admitted" the Nationals did give Harper a large offer but he declined it because free agency was so close and he wanted to explore his options. A year ago, the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Chicago Cubs looked to be the favorites to sign Harper.

Now that Harper is officially a free agent, he can negotiate with any team.

The Dodgers inquired about acquiring Harper from the Nationals before July's trade deadline and later claimed him off waivers in August.

He has 10 years left on a 13-year, $325 million contract where he'll be making between $26 million and $32 million every year through the 2028 season.

That leaves the Phillies, who Nightengale says are the expected destination for Harper among the majority of baseball people. He did start in a home All-Star Game at Nationals Park, but Harper hit just.214 in the first-half of the 2018 season.

It's on all of us that we didn't see "Harper's bazaar" coming from a thousand miles away.

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