Bryce Harper is reportedly trying to convince the Phillies to sign Kris Bryant
Can Bryce Harper convince the Philadelphia Phillies to make the winning offer in the bidding war for Kris Bryant?
According to MLB insider Jon Heyman, the reigning NL MVP is trying to do just that.
If we look at past precedent, Harper has been as successful at convincing the Phillies to make moves as he is at hitting baseballs lengthy distances.
Last year, Harper wanted J.T. Realmuto signed to a new deal, and the Phillies got it done. Ahead of the 2021 trade deadline, he wanted his team to be buyers, and Dave Dombrowski went out and made a big trade with the Texas Rangers. It didn’t work out as well as they’d hoped, but they didn’t sit back and twiddle their thumbs, either.
Harper also made pointed comments about the lackluster state of the Phillies’ farm system, and during and after the season, the Phillies rebuilt their entire player development team. They lured Preston Mattingly away from the San Diego Padres and Anirudh Kilambi from the Tampa Bay Rays, to build a better farm. And over the past year, the farm has already turned around, improving in the organizational rankings for the first time in half a decade.
This is not to suggest that Harper is trying to run the show the way LeBron James tries to play GM on his teams, but it’s clear the Phillies value their superstar’s input. Harper made it clear when he signed his blockbuster deal that his goal is to spend his career in Philadelphia and win championships in a Phillies uniform. And it’s more than likely that the Phillies had to promise to build a competitive roster around him in order for him to sign with them.
Bryant makes so much sense for the Phillies. He can play multiple infield and outfield positions, hits for power, and already has familiarity with their superstar, since the two grew up playing ball together in Las Vegas. Harper isn’t asking for anything the Phillies shouldn’t have or don’t need, so it’s just a question of if they’ll buck up and go get Bryant.