UPDATE: The Mets have sweetened their offer.
8:23 AM: Ken Rosenthal reports that the Mets have made David Wright an offer he’s almost certain to reject: six years, $100 million.
Executives around the league have figured that Wright would get something north of $125 million. Sources close to Wright have said that he wants seven years. This deal is basically what Evan Longoria and Ryan Zimmerman got. Longoria, however, is obviously in a different situation, in that he was four years from free agency when he got his deal. Zimmerman is not the player that Wright is.
Maybe this is just an opening salvo. A test to see just how married David Wright is to the idea of staying in New York. But it sure seems that $100 million is a lowball offer. Especially in an offseason when all signs point to teams getting more generous, not less. It makes one think that the Mets are more interested in trading Wright than keeping him.
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.