UPDATE: It’s live. Still before 7AM. See, you still get your money’s worth from me, even when I’m slacking.
6:00AM: Life and stuff happened as last night’s games were going final, so my usual “write most of the recaps up before bed/catch up on the late games at 5:45AM” thing just didn’t happen. Apologies.
Maybe if NBC were to pay to relocate me to a nice co-op in an interwar building in San Francisco I’d be able to get to all the scores earlier and this sort of thing could be avoided. Please suggest this to my superiors if you get the chance.
In any event: ATH will be along a bit later this morning and the rest of the day should not be interrupted.
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.