Tuesday, January 29, 2019
The Longer We Wait
I'm starting to think the longer it takes Bryce Harper to sign with anyone, the better the chances are that the Washington Nationals resign Harper. I think most of baseball would love for him to sign with the Philadelphia Phillies, while we would not be surprised that the Los Angeles Dodgers swoop in and sign him as well.
Recent news has the San Diego Padres of all teams, suddenly getting in on the Bryce Harper-Manny Machado sweepstakes.... Machado especially. Early reports are that the San Diego Padres plan for a meeting with Machado. The Padres might be able to get this done, maybe they are sick of sitting at the kids table, and they want to graduate to the big boys table. The Padres landed Eric Hosmer last off-season, and are apparently one of the teams talking to the Miami Marlins in acquiring J.T. Realmuto, who many consider the best catcher in all of baseball.
The Padres have plenty of young talent coming up, they need to merge veteran ready-to-play stars with this youth movement for what they have been working on to ultimately pay off. Imagine if they had Machado, Realmuto & maybe even Corey Kluber eventually joining Hosmer -- then they would be in business, right? But would it cost them some of the big prospects such as Fernando Tatis Jr.? We'll have to see. The Padres are in a tricky spot, they could stay low and see if all these prospects pay off, but that may be another two to three years until their full potential is realized, and that's if these prospects fully materialize.
Now will Machado sign with San Diego? Overall, I can't see him doing it unless, the Padres land Kluber and Realmuto in the next few days. I do like the idea of Kluber heading that rotation in San Diego though.
Like I mentioned above, it would not surprise me now if the Nationals resign Harper, but I'm guessing if they do, there would be a player option for Harper to bail out of a new contract with Washington, if the Nationals still keep coming up short of a world championship.
This season's off-season moves for the most part have looked good for the Nationals, maybe this could be one last hurrah with the acquisitions of Patrick Corbin, Anibal Sanchez, Yan Gomes & Brian Dozier. Sanchez was a low-risk signing which can pay huge dividends if it pays off, but the idea of Sanchez to repeat last season's performance this late in his career, while putting up more innings is a lot to ask for. I hope it works out, I like Anibal from his Tigers days, and he will be rejoining Max Scherzer. Don't get me wrong, I think Dozier is on the decline, but his glove is definitely an upgrade over Daniel Murphy's glove, and with that rotation you want good fielders behind you.
I also want to take the moment and mention, with the slow off-season and this becoming the new norm, maybe MLB preview magazines such as Athlons, The Sporting News, Street & Smith's, should heavily consider pushing their publications for these issues back for release dates in mid-March now. No one wants to shell out $8 to $10 on a magazine that doesn't have Harper, Machado or any other big name guys on any big league rosters.
While us fans (particularly in the Midwest) are freezing, while trying to stay warm in our beds, really need the hot stove to heat up... Baseball fans really live for the off-season, and for at least the second consecutive year its a dud, and with the bigger contracts, we may unfortunately see more and more of this as it is becoming the new norm.