Patrick Newman of NPB tracker has a pretty handy post up. One that answers a question I’ve often had but usually forget to think more about after the initial thought: how much do U.S. players make when they go over to Japan?
The answer: it depends on how much MLB experience, if any. Kevin Youkilis and Andruw Jones are at one end of the scale, a guy who couldn’t break out of Triple-A is someplace in the middle and a guy who has scuffled around various winter leagues and independent leagues as, obviously, down low.
Click through to NPB tracker for the actual numbers and a little handy bit of knowledge on this slow Monday morning.
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.