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Bryce Harper, Phillies should use caution (MLB.com)
"Harper is arguably the most recognizable player in Major League Baseball. If he signs with Philly, he will be more than the face of the franchise. He will carry the burden of being the face of an entire sports-obsessed city where babies will be named Bryce if they win big. Beware: That same fan base can turn on you fast if you don't live up to the superstar label both on and off the field. Don't believe me? Google Donovan McNabb or Allen Iverson."
$400 million? Bryce Harper, Manny Machado might have to settle for less (ESPN+ — Requires subscription)
"And yet it seems possible the final inked figures in their respective contracts won't be as significant as anticipated. Speculative projections like $400 million have been floated in recent years, some going so high as half a billion... as it turns out, the bidding isn't so wild and crazy."
Bryce Harper has been talking to Rhys Hoskins about playing in Philly (PhillyVoice)
Harper has talked to Hoskins about the clubhouse, the organization, Gabe Kapler, and other things — Hoskins, in other words, told Harper he was there to chat if Harper wanted it.
Brodie Van Wagenen confident in Mets for 2019 (MLB.com)
Van Wagenen called the Mets the "favorites" in the division, oddly enough.
Matt Adams returning fills a very specific need for the Nationals (WaPo)
Matt Adams needed a job. The Nats needed a first baseman and a lefty. It all just made sense, even after the Nats traded off Adams' contract to clear financial space.
Nationals' luxury tax bill is nearly $2.4 million (MASN)
The Nats will pay a little more than two times what they paid for Joaquin Benoit as a penalty for their expenses.
Adams jumped at chance to re-sign with "A-class organization" (MASN)
"“It’s an A-class organization, and it’s a place that feels like home to me. I know I was only there for three-quarters of a season, but it felt way longer than that. I’m just very excited that the opportunity presented itself to be able to sign back," Adams said.
There’s precedent for Bryce Harper leaving Washington. It happened 84 years ago. (WaPo)
He was the face of the team, but the Nats parted with him for $250,000. This refers, of course, to 1934 shortstop Joe Cronin, who led the team to the 1933 pennant, providing a payoff that saved the team financially in the heart of the depression.
Familiarity makes Matt Adams’ return to the Nationals an easy call (NBCSW)
Adams followed the Nats closely and noticed how the team improved — and when Mike Rizzo called, he answered.