Indians promote Chris Antonetti to general manager and name Mark Shapiro team president

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In a move announced back in February and made official this morning, the Indians have promoted assistant general manager Chris Antonetti to GM while former GM Mark Shapiro becomes team president.
Director of baseball operations Mike Chernoff also gets a promotion to assistant GM, essentially moving into Antonetti’s old role, but Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com reports that “he’ll continue to oversee professional scouting and baseball analytics” along with assisting “in player acquisition, contract negotiations, and day-to-day operations.”
Shapiro replaced John Hart as the Indians general manager in 2001 and faced the difficult task of breaking up a veteran-laden team that had dominated the AL Central while making the playoffs in six of the previous seven seasons.
Shapiro’s rebuilding effort went well initially, as the Indians followed three straight losing seasons with 93 wins in 2005 and then 95 wins and a trip to the ALCS in 2007, but things quickly fell apart after that and now Cleveland is once again in rebuilding mode after losing 97 and 93 games in the past two years.

Phillies owner John Middleton is in Las Vegas with Bryce Harper

Bryce Harper
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Jim Salisbury of NBC Sports Philadelphia reports that Phillies owner John Middleton flew to Las Vegas for a meeting with Bryce Harper on Friday. Per ESPN’s Jeff Passan, it’s “more of a meet-and-greet than a sign-a-deal” affair, but as the club is still at the forefront of trade rumors involving the All-Star slugger, there remains a possibility (however slight) that something could be completed in the days to come.

Even now, the Phillies aren’t alone in the race to sign Harper, but recent rumors have helped whittle down the competition from five or more teams (Phillies, Nationals, White Sox, Giants, and Padres) to three strong contenders. The Giants are said to be interested in a lucrative short-term deal with the outfielder, while the Padres remain in the conversation despite inking Manny Machado to a mammoth 10-year, $300 million contract this week. It’s not yet clear just how far either team would go to outbid Philadelphia as talks with Harper intensify.

As for the Nationals and White Sox, the former officially bowed out earlier today, and MLB Network’s Jon Heyman adds that the latter won’t make a strong play for Harper as they feel the asking price and competing offers are “getting too high” for the 26-year-old’s services. If a mystery team is still in the mix, there’s been no word on their standing with Harper in the last month or so.