As we noted yesterday, Friday marks the 75th Anniversary of Lou Gehrig’s iconic “Luckiest Man” speech. As a tribute, MLB Productions recorded a video of first basemen from every club reciting a line from the speech, intertwined with footage of Gehrig’s original words. This is extremely well done in my opinion. Hats off to MLB Productions and the players involved.
Also, hats off to MLB, which is donating $300,000 to various ALS charities to commemorate the anniversary of Gehrig’s sad, inspirational moment. Players and coaches will also be wearing commemorative patches on their jerseys.
It’ll be played at Yankee Stadium today and will play before all of the games at the other parks on Friday.
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.