With Bryce Harper finally hitting the open market, various sneaky attempts to lock him in during the 2018 season are now coming to light.
Yesterday, we heard that the Nationals had made an "aggressive" offer to Harper towards the end of last year that would have kept him into a Nats uniform for another decade, but Harper turned it down. Now, reporting suggests that the Los Angeles Dodgers had made a push to acquire the star outfielder from Washington during the waiver trade period in August-- the eventual NL champs were ready to send talented but mercurial slugger Yasiel Puig to the Nets in return, but no agreement could be reached.
While the news that teams were in on Harper at the deadline isn't exactly new, this particular offer illuminates just how aggressive the Dodgers really were about winning it all last year, after already renting a few months of the now-free agent Manny Machado from the Orioles.
It sure looks like Manny Machado just said goodbye to the Dodgers pic.twitter.com/hkGCDW2bdr— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) November 1, 2018
The Nationals must have thought they'd have a real shot at retaining Harper, because if they didn't, this deal doesn't sound bad at all. It would have been a major wave of the white flag, but getting Puig for Harper is better than getting nothing, which is what they stand to do right now.