Bryce Harper is not a Free agent for two more seasons. So why the F is everyone writing glaring headlines about him right now??
I thought the Bob Nightengale article was a complete hack job against the Nationals, completely unnecessary and taking gratuitous shots at the organization over a situation that could go a dozen different ways between now and November, 2018 when he’s ACTUALLY a free agent. And then the subsequent Jeff Passan article that followed it a complete over-reaction, basically pulling one potentially innocuous quote out of Nightengale’s article to write a 1,000 words chastising the entire Nats organization. Was it really that slow of a news day in the National Harbor that these were the stories that had to be written yesterday??
I have never really liked Nightengale’s style of reporting; he was the one that trashed Adam LaRoche earlier this year by quoting a bunch of unnamed members of the White Sox front office, essentially enabling them to write their version of the narrative of that situation without having to put their name on it, but the Passan article caused me to lose a bit of reporting respect for him too. Passan’s passing judgement on the entire Nats organization by virtue of one anonymous quote from an unnamed Nationals Executive who commented that the Nationals were “not prepared” to meet a 10yr/$400M contract.
Here’s a thought: stop quoting anonymous people who probably just threw out a line passing you in the hallway, or who have an axe to grind and are too chicken-sh*t to put their name behind their words, and put some journalistic integrity behind your reporting.
OF COURSE the Nationals are “not prepared” to meet a $400M contract demand. Who is?? Are the Yankees, given the massive luxury taxes now built into future CBAs? Are the Dodgers, who just got told to cut their debts or risk further penalties? Are the Cubs, who just won a World Series on the backs of a bunch of pre-arb sluggers and reasonably priced arms? What other organization in baseball has the financial where-with-all?? Certainly not the Nationals, who (thanks to a short-sighted deal and a ridiculously argumentative owner in Baltimore) are stuck in one of the worst RSN deals in the majors and thus are missing out on literally tens of millions of dollars of revenue? How does any team commit a quarter of their payroll to one player in the modern age, especially one that has shown himself to be as injury-prone as Harper?
Harper is a great player. Is he worth being compensated as easily the highest paid player in the game? Not in my book. He’s not better than Trout or Kershaw. He’s not nearly durable enough to merit that kind of commitment from a sane organization and that puts him behind some of his other compatriots right now (Manny Machado for example). He’s a product of his headline inducing agent Scott Boras and these two writers (well respected and nationally known) fell for it. Again. I’m sure he’ll get some ridiculous contract in 2018, but its no small secret that it probably won’t be the Nationals.
Can we go back to arguing about whether we should be saving a 19-yr old who has never played above A-ball instead of acquiring a recent NL MVP or a guy who has finished in the top 5 of Cy Young voting five straight years??