The Philadelphia Phillies and Bryce Harper seem to be putting their cards on the table.
Team owner John Middleton met with the free-agent superstar Friday night in Las Vegas in order to determine whether their interest in a long-term contract is mutual, ESPN reported Friday night, citing sources. Harper’s free agency saga has dragged into spring training as he seeks to score a record-setting contract reportedly in excess of 10 years, $300 million.
The race for Harper’s services began in October when he entered free agency. At least seven teams reportedly met with him this offseason, but the Phillies have been among the most aggressive of his suitors and are thought to be the leading contenders to sign him.
However, the market hasn’t met Harper’s demands to date, and he has shown his determination to wait until a team offers a deal he deems suitable before making his next career move.
Harper’s meeting with Middleton didn’t produce a signed contract, but it almost certainty added some clarity to the respective negotiating positions of the player and team.