Nationals Owner Mark Lerner Does Not Expect Bryce Harper To Re-Sign

Paola Ditto
Dicembre 8, 2018

"When we met with them and we gave them the offer, we told them, 'This is the best we can do.' We went right to the finish line very quickly", Lerner told 106.7 The Fan.

Bryce Harper #34 of the Washington Nationals in the dugout before the game against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on July 26, 2018 in Miami, Florida. Ten or so teams might still be in the mix, including the Phillies, who've declared themselves ready to "spend stupid money", but the Nats were viewed among the favorites until Lerner said, "I really don't expect [Harper] to come back at this point". "I think they've chose to move on". "That's just not Mr. Boras" MO to leave money on the table". At a news conference introducing Corbin on Friday, general manager Mike Rizzo was the deal was "independent" of what might happen with Harper.

Even if Harper was willing to accept the previous Nationals offer, Lerner said he wasn't sure the team could now make it work. Although no team jumped out as the front-runner to sign the star, it appears the Nationals are out of the running. Harper is expected to receive the largest contract in free agency this year, and Boras is known for extending talks with his free agents past the holiday break.

As it stands, the Nationals will enter 2019 with an outfield of Adam Eaton, Juan Soto, Michael A. Taylor and Victor Robles.

"We feel good about where we're at", Rizzo said about his starting staff. Neither is Lerner concerned about the state of the Nationals' outfield unit without Harper, saying it's a "young, pretty incredible outfield defensively, and certainly with the bat it's going to be special". I think Adam, now I think he's back. He had that season.

The Sox are, after all, owners of the eighth-longest postseason drought in American professional sports (nine years), haven't enjoyed a winning season in six years and are coming off a 100-loss season in which they ranked 25th among 30 major-league teams in attendance. "And he'll still be iconic in the city. You can't be mad at him, and I don't think he'd be mad at us if we can't go any further".

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