MLB Rumors: Phillies Owner Won’t ‘Go Down Without A Fight’ Over Bryce Harper

Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals watches his solo home run
Ezra Shaw / Getty Images

Free agent Bryce Harper has been the hot topic for the last week, ever since it was announced that fellow free agent Manny Machado was free no more after reaching a financial agreement with the San Diego Padres. Since then, Harper has had the world of Major League Baseball at the edge of their collective seats as fans wonder where he is headed next.

So far, we know that the Washington Nationals, Harper’s former team, are out of the running after it was confirmed that he turned down a 10-year, $300 million deal with them at the end of last year already. The Chicago White Sox are also no longer in contention.

Over the weekend, it seemed just three teams were still realistically in with a chance: The Padres, the San Francisco Giants, and the Philadelphia Phillies. By Monday, it appeared that the Los Angeles Dodgers had also placed an offer on the table.

While Harper isn’t giving anything away about which side he’s leaning towards, Phillies’ Announcer John Kruk has shared that the team’s owner, John Middleton, appears ready to fight to the death to get Harper’s signature down on paper.

Kruk was speaking on The Rich Eisen Show when he explained where Middleton stands with regards to Harper.

“I know John well, and John’s a very competitive man. I don’t think he’s going to go down without a fight to try to get Bryce in a Phillies uniform for however many years.”

Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals waits for the pitch
  Kelly Kline / Getty Images

As Kruk points out, at some point Harper is going to have to actually bite the bullet and make a decision about where he wants to play ball, and sooner rather than later would be best given that training has already started across the country.

The 26-year-old has already made it clear he’s looking for a long-term deal, and, by the sounds of it, a record-breaking one at that. Previous reports have indicated that Harper has turned down multiple $300 million deals of late, and the only deal that paid a player more in baseball history was Giancarlo Stanton’s $325 million deal signed back in 2014.

As The Inquisitr previously reported, there is a rumor doing the rounds that Harper would prefer not to go to the Phillies, which most believe is the current front runner with the biggest offer on the table, because of the location. With his hometown in Nevada, any of the three deals in California might be preferable to him if this is the case.