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Smash Mouth may very well break Bryce Harper deal


One of the best things that has happened in the nearly ten years this site has existed was when the Braves’ signing of A.J. Pierzynski was broken by a guy in line buying a ham. Yes, that happened.

I loved it because of the sheer randomness of it all. It’s not quite the same anymore, but when I started in this business the scoops guys — Rosenthal, Heyman, Olney, Passan, etc. — were considered rock stars. They still are to some degree, but the industry has, wisely, I think, moved away from thinking scoops matter in and of themselves and focuses more on what scoops mean. Reporting about their context and significance matters more now than it used to. Luckily for most of the old scoops guys, they do that well too, so no worries.

Still, I’d like to think that the day the guy at the ham store broke real news was when the shift truly happened. That now, less than five years later, you can take an elevator up to Bryce Harper‘s suite in Las Vegas and look west, and with the right kind of eyes you can almost see the high-water mark—that place where the scoops wave finally broke and rolled back.

If the ham thing didn’t change everything, what has happened in the past 24 hours might. That’s when Smash Mouth — yes, the band Smash Mouth — took to Twitter and, quite possibly, may have begun the process of breaking news about an All-Star. Hey now:

Some more traditional members of the media — like, actual reporters, not Sugar Ray or Sum-41 or something — politely tried to walk that back. They suggested that, with all due respect to Smash Mouth, they were not hearing that the Giants had come off the notion of a short-term offer to Harper.

Then a few minutes ago my NBC colleague Alex Pavlovic — who is probably far too young to have enjoyed prime “Fush Yu Mang” or “Astro Lounge”-era Smash Mouth — confirmed the band’s report a bit more specifically:

All along, the Giants have been viewed as a short-term solution for Bryce Harper. That’s not actually the case.

The Giants and Harper’s team have discussed a 10-year contract, NBC Sports Bay Area has learned. That would match the deal the Padres gave Manny Machado earlier this month and likely give Harper a chance at the record dollar figure he has been looking for.

So, yes, the big takeaway here is that Harper may be entertaining a ten-year offer from someone besides the Phillies. I think it’s also worth noting that Smash Mouth, even if they aren’t the ones who will eventually report the details, was on the story before anyone else.


Brewers have 3 positive COVID tests at alternate site

Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports
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MILWAUKEE — The Brewers had two players and a staff member test positive for the coronavirus at their alternate training site in Appleton, Wisconsin.

Milwaukee president of baseball operations David Stearns confirmed the positive results Saturday and said they shouldn’t impact the major league team. Teams are using alternate training sites this season to keep reserve players sharp because the minor league season was canceled due to the pandemic.

Stearns said the positive tests came Monday and did not name the two players or the staff member. Players must give their permission for their names to be revealed after positive tests.

The entire camp was placed in quarantine.

“We have gone through contact tracing,” Stearns said. “We do not believe it will have any impact at all on our major league team. We’ve been fortunate to get through this season relatively unscathed in this area. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to get all the way there at our alternate site.”

Milwaukee entered Saturday one game behind the Reds and Cardinals for second place in the NL Central, with the top two teams qualifying for the postseason.

The Brewers still will be able to take taxi squad players with them on the team’s trip to Cincinnati and St. Louis in the final week of the season. He said those players have had repeated negative tests and the team is “confident” there would be no possible spread of the virus.

“Because of the nature of who these individuals were, it’s really not going to affect the quarantine group at all,” Stearns said. “We’re very fortunate that the group of players who could potentially be on a postseason roster for us aren’t interacting all that much with the individuals that tested positive.”