Nats GM: “Bryce Harper is not going anywhere”

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UPDATE: Nationals GM Mike Rizzo just told Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post that “Bryce is not going anywhere. I believe in this team.”

Thus ends that bit of speculation.

10:26AM: Last night we learned that the Washington Nationals, still treading water in the NL East, below .500 and several games behind the Phillies and Braves, were at least considering a major selloff. Perhaps even including Bryce Harper, who would easily be the biggest name traded at the deadline in some time.

While any trade of Harper seems like it’d be a long shot, it now sounds like even the long shot odds of dealing him are out of the question:

It probably makes a lot of baseball sense to trade Harper given where the Nats are at the moment, but I have no idea how, as an entertainment enterprise, you deal him without your business being construed as a spectacular failure. I mean, if a two-time defending division champ (a) fires it’s 90+ game-winning manager; (b) underachieves spectacularly; and (c) sells off the most famous ballplayer in D.C. in, like, a century, I’m pretty sure it says more about the folks running the team than the players, and I doubt those running the team want that kind of blame.


Dodgers sign OF Jason Heyward to minor league deal

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LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles Dodgers signed outfielder Jason Heyward to a minor league deal and invited him to spring training.

The 33-year-old was released by the Chicago Cubs earlier this offseason.

Heyward, who was injured at times last season, put up the worst offensive numbers of his career, batting .204 and with 10 RBIs and one home run in 137 plate appearances. However, he’s a valuable defender in the outfield.

The deal reunites Heyward with first baseman Freddie Freeman. They came up through the Atlanta Braves system and have remained friends ever since.

Heyward was a leader in the Cubs’ clubhouse, helping them win the 2016 World Series.