Any heartfelt dreams of Bryce Harper playing alongside childhood friend and Chicago Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant are officially over. According to The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal, Harper's deal will not have an opt-out clause, per the player's request.
Harper hit.247 with 34 homers, 100 RBIs, and had an on-base percentage of.393 last season.
The deal tops Giancarlo Stanton's then-record $325 million extension he inked with the Marlins in November 2014, though the $25 million per year comes up short of the highest average annual record for a position player, which Nolan Arenado boasts with $32.5 million per year.
According to MLB Network's Jon Heyman, Harper "really hit it off" with Phillies manager Gabe Kapeler during their meeting in Las Vegas during the league's winter meetings. With Harper, they weren't involved at all even though he's a 26-year-old superstar with lefty power and patience, two traits that define the Yankees historically. Five teams now have a higher payroll than the Giants, who are well below the $206 million luxury tax threshold.More news: Mauricio Pochettino sorry he can not apologise to Mike Dean in person
The money probably wasn't at a level where Harper wanted it to be if he chose Philly over the Giants.
The Phillies landed the star free agent they sought so desperately.
Only one of the two biggest free agents in baseball this offseason will sign with an NL West team. He won the Rookie of the Year award in 2012, and was Major League Baseball's MVP in 2015.
But while the Nationals advanced to the playoffs in four of Harper's first six seasons, they did not reach the postseason a year ago, finishing a disappointing 82-80, while ending the season eight games back in the National League East.