David Lennon of Newsday spoke with R.A. Dickey this morning and asked him how he feels about the Mets appealing the official scorers decision to call the ball hit to David Wright in last night a hit instead of an error. He was pretty candid about it:
“It would be weird. I don’t know if it would be quite as satisfying. I think the asterisk beside the no-hitter would get more attention than the no-hitter, you know? Plus, you’re not pitching the eighth, ninth inning with the pressure of a no-hitter going. It would be a little bit cheap. But, for the integrity of the game, I think it’s worthy of a review, just to make sure.”
The stuff about pressure is a good point. The play in question happened in the first inning, thus taking the no-no and its attendant pressure off the table early. I bet most pitchers would agree that pitching in the late innings of a no hitter is a totally different deal.
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.