Philadelphia Phillies: The saga of signing Bryce Harper


The Philadelphia Phillies pursuit of Bryce Harper has provided chaos, confusion, and pandemonium. The one thing missing: Bryce Harper.

“The meeting went well between Bryce Harper and the San Diego Padres. Both sides were very impressed, and it now appears that the Padres have leaped the Philadelphia Phillies as front-runners to acquire the six-time All-Star’s services. Stay tuned.”

Yes, this is a completely fabricated quote; for now.

Harper most recently met with the Padres, joining the Washington Nationals, Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers and the aforementioned Phillies as the fifth known team to have show interest in the 2015 NL MVP.

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Soon, media outlets will be reporting that the meeting went well. Why? Well, for one, has there ever been a “bad” meeting? Of course not. That wouldn’t be good for business. Secondly, because this is what agents do. They drum up interest for their clients by using anonymous reports and league insiders as pawns in their game of high-stakes chess.

All at the expense of emotional fan bases.

On Tuesday of this week, Phillies fans were played. At the time, reports suggested that the  Phillies and Harper had reached a tentative contract agreement, pending a review of medicals. An announcement was expected soon. Now just a couple of days later, Harper and his representatives are meeting with the Padres. Coincidence? Perhaps, but the bottom line is don’t always believe everything you see. In today’s age of social media sports reporting where everyone wants to be the first to break the big story, trust with caution.

Harper may ultimately end up choosing the Phillies. There’s also a good chance that the Phillies are being used by super-agent Scott Boras to drive the market higher for his client. When Phillies owner John Middleton claimed he’s ready to spend “stupid money” this offseason, that was like music to the ears of agents everywhere. It’s no surprise that pretty much every big-name free agent has been linked to the Phillies at some point or another during the offseason. It’s also the reason why Harper and fellow big-name free agent Manny Machado isn’t likely to sign any time soon. Increased speculation heightens their demand.

It was *ahem* reported that the White Sox offer for Machado was $175 million over seven years. In baseball terms, this was an underwhelming offer for a 26-year-old star. Could this be posturing by an agent to entice other teams to enter the bidding fray? During the latter stages of the 2018 season, it was widely believed that either player would walk away with a $300-plus million payday this offseason. That’s a far cry from $175 million.

Time will tell how this all plays out. In the meantime, rest assured there will be plenty more *Breaking News* tweets and insider speculation, when the truth is no one knows. As it stands, Harper has already signed with the Phillies five times over. Unless you’re a thrill seeker that loves the adrenaline rush of thinking he signed with your team, sit back and relax because this story seems likely to extend well into Spring Training.

Next. Latest Bryce Harper rumors with Phillies will most likely lead to more disappointment. dark

Or he could sign tomorrow. After all, what do I know? I’m simply along for the ride.