What if teams could not trade players or sign free agents? What if their roster was limited, for all time, to players they drafted and signed as amateurs and developed through the minors? What would that league look like?
Domenic Lanza of It’s About the Money tries to figure that out, setting forth all home-grown team rosters.
Think Adam Wainwright back on the Braves. Justin Masterson and Anibal Sanchez as Red Sox. The Marlins with Miguel Cabrera, Adrian Gonzalez and Giancarlo Stanton hitting in the middle of the order.
For some of you it will make you cringe at how poorly your team has developed players. For others it will make you cringe at how many good players your team has sent away. For all of us, however, it’s a lot of fun.
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.