Bryce Harper meets with San Diego Padres: Report
It might be too on the nose to say a new suitor for Bryce Harper has “come out of left field.”
The San Diego Padres are meeting with Harper “today or tomorrow” in Las Vegas, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported Thursday.
Rosenthal added that the superstar free agent and his representative have met with “a number of” other teams recently:
#Padres officials meeting today or tomorrow with Bryce Harper in Las Vegas, sources tell The Athletic. Meeting expected to include ownership representatives. Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 31, 2019
Harper and/or his agent, Scott Boras, have met with a number of clubs in recent days, including second and third meetings in some cases, sources say. No indication a deal is close. https://t.co/LQgI9jceJD Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 31, 2019
Before this, the short list of potential landing spots for the longtime Washington Nationals outfielder seemed to be the Philadelphia Phillies, the Chicago White Sox, the Los Angeles Dodgers or a reunion with Washington.
The Padres would be a surprising choice for Harper if he is looking to win a World Series. San Diego went 66-96 last year and hasn’t made the postseason since 2006. (The White Sox are in a similar position, with no playoff appearances since 2008.)
Players, analysts and fans alike have criticized the glacial speed at which this baseball free agency period has moved. Harper, Manny Machado, Dallas Keuchel and many other notable names remain unsigned just three weeks out from spring training.