Bryce Harper rumors running wild, dispelled as star’s free agency drags out

January 29, 2019

Each day Bryce Harper goes unsigned, the rumors involving the six-time All-Star free agent continue to pile up.

Over the past few days, a series of tweets ramped up speculation that Harper was due to sign soon only for others to knock them back down.

First, the Twitter account for the baseball video game “MLB The Show” tweeted on Monday, “You’ll want to keep an eye on this account tomorrow...just saying” and included a photo of Harper, who is the cover athlete for this year’s edition. The tweet sparked a discussion on whether that meant Harper was about to announce his decision.

Then on Tuesday morning, another account Vegas Gambling Stream said Harper had agreed to a deal with the Philadelphia Phillies and Vegas oddsmakers had taken “all prop bets off the board.”

But other reporters soon dispelled the rumors.

ESPN’s Ben Fawkes, who covers gambling, said there were no prop bets taken down because Vegas casinos aren’t allowed to offer team props related to Harper.

Just to get it out there: There are NO Bryce Harper team props at Las Vegas sportsbooks.Vegas is not allowed to offer these. So any reports of them being taken down due to his imminent signing are simply false. Ben Fawkes (@BFawkesESPN) January 29, 2019

MLB insider Jon Heyman, meanwhile, tweeted that the Phillies are still very much interested in Harper, but “rumors of him signing today in Philly are unfounded.”

phillies are interested and in on bryce harper. but rumors of him signing today in philly are unfounded. Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) January 29, 2019

ESPN’s Jeff Passan also said Harper isn’t close to signing.

Despite all the rumors bouncing around, Bryce Harper and Manny Machado came into today no closer to signing with a team than theyve been since Nov. 1. Joined @RB_Mrs and @RandyScottESPN on @SportsCenter this morning and compared it all to The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. pic.twitter.com/bcJo3t9Ib2 Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 29, 2019

Moral of the story: Be wary of what you read.

Twitter even suspended a phony account of someone named “Jeff Evans,” who falselyclaimed to be an MLB insider for 97.3 ESPN and had “reported” Harper agreed to a deal with the Phillies.

The tweet fooled Phillies fans, amassing more than 700 retweets, per the Philadelphia Inquirer.

one thing that’s blown my mind on this stupid website is how many people actually believe this Jeff Evans MLB account. he’s not a real account, who’s account started in October lists two stations that he “works” at, which he doesn’t the one TV station doesn’t even exist. Jamie Lynch (@jelynchjr) January 28, 2019

Update hourly