Dodgers: The Longer Bryce Harper Waits, the Better for LA
The Dodgers and the rest of the baseball world continues to wait until the Bryce Harper and Manny Machado domino drops. The longer Harper sits without a new team, the better for the Dodgers.
The MLB hot stove has gotten off to a frigid start especially when it comes to position players. The Dodgers and the rest of the league continue to wait for the Manny Machado and Bryce Harper dominoes to drop. Once the two big fish of free agency are reeled in, the rest of the players should start signing at a frantic pace.
For the Dodgers and Harper, there have been all kinds of rumors about how close they might be to a deal. One thing is clear and that is that Harper is willing to wait for the right deal and even the right team. The Phillies are the next team that will reportedly meet with Bryce, but the fact that the meeting will take place in Las Vegas sums up how Mr. Harper feels about Philadelphia.
There have been reports that Manny Machado and Bryce Harper do not want to play in Philly, and the meeting taking place in Las Vegas definitely supports that idea. The White Sox are also interested in Bryce Harper but don’t appear to be willing to go past seven years on a contract. That aligns perfectly with the Dodgers refusal to go ten years which the Nationals offered Harper at the beginning of free agency.
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The Dodgers and Andrew Friedman do a very good job of not letting anything leak out to the media but members of the front office have already paid a visit to Bryce Harper so that should be a clear indication that the Dodgers are seriously interested in signing him. The Dodgers are willing to offer Harper a record-setting deal based on annual salary but only on a shorter term deal.
The longer that the free agent saga plays on into the off-season the better the chances are for the Dodgers. The Yankees appear to be interested in Machado rather than Harper, the Cubs would need to clear out some salary, and the Cardinals and Nationals have upgraded their team in other ways that have taken them away from Harper. The only winning team with a clear path to Harper is the Dodgers after they traded away Matt Kemp and Yasiel Puig.
What interests Bryce Harper more, winning or more years on a contract? If the answer is more years then the Dodgers will miss out on Harper but if the answer is winning then the Dodgers have a genuine chance of reeling Harper in. The Dodgers still have plenty of moves to make this off-season but which route they take will depend on if they can bring the crown jewel of this year’s free agency back to Los Angeles.