As the hot stove heats up, it seems that Bryce Harper may sign sooner rather than later — though right now, the whole concept of him signing anywhere feels foreign. Just think, though: he could be in pinstripes come next week!
Here’s the deal in the District:
Turner hits Super-2: so who gets fired? (Nationals Arms Race)
Someone, somewhere — maybe it was Matt Williams, maybe it was Dusty Baker, maybe it was Mike Rizzo — cost the Nationals about $5 million in money they should be using to upgrade their bullpen and infield by calling up Trea Turner for a few useless days. Two, to be exact.
Bryce Harper is a star the Dodgers need to reach (LA Times)
Los Angeles doesn't expect to land Bryce Harper. It's not quite an L.A.-esque vision, and for once, fiscal conservatism (in the baseball sense, not in the Friedman sense) doesn't seem like the right decision for the residents of Chavez Ravine; they have no luxury tax to worry about and plenty of money to work with to get a transcendent star. Steve Garvey, for what it's worth, thinks Bryce belongs as the final piece in L.A. — in the author's words, "the city should demand more — the market should demand Harper."
Ray Knight will not return to MASN’s Nationals broadcasts next season (WaPo)
"A person with direct knowledge of that decision said the network pulled Knight after he was involved in a verbal altercation with a member of the MASN production team — an exchange in which Knight berated a MASN employee with an expletive-laden tirade."
Why key to Giants signing Bryce Harper could be billionaire Charles Johnson (NBC Sports Bay Area)
Charles Johnson is supposedly the majority owner of the Giants, and has pushed the team to make splashy moves before — moreover, the Cubs and the Braves seem out of it, so Johnson may be poised to strike.
Manny Machado or Bryce Harper: which is a better free agent fit, target for Phillies? (PhillyVoice)
Machado has been more consistent, while Harper has more swag — but less of a natural place on the Phillies' loaded roster.
Cardinals head to GM Meetings in the market for 'elite talent' (STL Post-Dispatch)
"The Cardinals intend to explore Harper’s market and see how they fit, sources confirmed. They have long eyed free agent Josh Donaldson as a possible answer at third base. The improvement the Cardinals seek, especially when it goes by the name Bryce, comes at a price."
Poll: Bryce Harper Vs. Manny Machado (MLBTR)
"For better or worse, Machado and Harper are primed to occupy a massive chunk of their next teams’ payrolls for several years to come. The question is: Which of the two do you believe has a better chance to live up to his next contract?"