And so we have all become media whores. As day 120 of the Bryce Harper saga continues...endless speculation continues to rattle social media like a bat out of hell. On Thursday, former MLB general manager Jim Duquette went on the radio stating that the Phillies do not have the top offer on the table for Bryce Harper; and that their offer is between 270-300 million dollars.
This comes on the heels of a report from Steve Philips (another former gm and analyst) yesterday stating that the Phillies now feel their chances of landing Harper are "remote."
These days everyone has their own take on the Bryce Harper situation. The contract negotiation has now taken on the appearance of a soap opera. It's like reading a comic book and comparing a battle between super hero and villain. The only problem with this scenario is that at the end of the day only one side can win.
In this case...the "villain" is indeed super agent Scott Boras. On the other hand, the Phillies organization continues to play the arrogant narrative lead by Matt Klentak and his idea that the Phillies have had an "objectively excellent offseason." It appears that Klentak would rather play a high stakes poker game than win the player. This strategy may end up being the death of the Phillies chances of landing Bryce Harper.
Scott Boras is an evil genius. He is extremely good at his job. His job is very simple. Get the most dollars for his client at whatever cost and he knows just exactly how to push buttons to maximize each deal. In the case of Bryce Harper, Boras is trying to get him a record breaking contract which would shatter Giancarlo Stanton's 13 Year/325 million dollar deal.
Of course, Manny Machado signing for 10 years and $300 million last week and then the Nolan Arenado extension this week have only enhanced the leverage that Boras has in his arsenal. So knowing all that we know and knowing the facts, the bottom line to make a deal happen should be at 10 Years and 335 Million Dollars right? And a 3 year opt out right? This is a no brainer and should now be the starting point for any negotiation with Bryce Harper. Except that maybe it is not.
No one really knows where the Phillies stand on this issue and there is no way of knowing their exact offer. However; one thing is for sure, if they have only offered between 270-300 as this report says, then they never really were planning on spending "stupid money" like the owner previously said. BREAKING NEWS!!!!!!!.....THE PHILLIES JUST SIGNED BRYCE HARPER!!!!!! As I was writing this piece the news broke out all over twitter (first reported by Jon Heyman) and then WIP that the Phillies had signed Harper.
So here we are. Ultimately Boras did his job and did it well...judging by the massive record breaking deal that he was able to secure for his client. 13 Years/$330 Million/No Opt-Outs/Full No Trade Clause. Now that's a massive contract if I ever did see one...basically keeping Harper in a Phillies uniform for the remainder of his career. So in the end...the Phillies front office was patient and was able to land their superstar.
Philadelphia is now the place to be. Welcome to Philly Bryce. Thank you to Phillies ownership (Middleton and Klentak) for making this happen. And thank you to twitter for being the Bryce Harper mouthpiece through this seemingly endless saga.
For a fan that lived during the 2007-2013 run, this moment has instantly brought me back to that moment. This may be the biggest free agent signing in the history of Phillies sports. Harper is a game changer and now we can plug him into the middle of an already improved lineup. And now the Phillies can truly say that they have had an "Objectively Excellent Offseason."
Exciting times to be a Philly fan folks. We have a multitude of young stars...Carson Wentz, Joel Embiid, Ben Simmons, Carter Hart, Aaron Nola, Rhys Hoskins...and now Bryce Harper. Savor the moment friends. Enjoy this opportunity.
So as the World Of Boras Turns, Remember that it was Boras that delivered Bryce Harper to the Phillies. And for that I give thanks. And now I can finally relax. I am taking a Twitter vacation for a few days. Welcome Home Bryce!