Rejoice, baseball fans! There finally seems to be a light at the end of the Bryce Harper tunnel. Maybe.
One of the biggest mysteries of the MLB offseason is why neither he nor Manny Machado have been signed yet. While Machado has at least narrowed his options down to a short list of a few teams, Harper seemed even farther away from signing.
However, according to Jon Morosi, the Nationals, Phillies, White Sox, and Padres remain as potential Harper destinations, so it's close to coming into focus.
Bryce Harper has four active suitors as February nears, source confirms: #Nationals, #Phillies, #WhiteSox, and now #Padres. At least one other team remains involved on periphery, but overwhelming likelihood is he will sign with one of those four clubs. @MLB @MLBNetwork— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) January 31, 2019
The first three make legitimate sense. He's made his name in this league as a star in Washington, and returning wouldn't be out of the ordinary. The Phillies have tons of money available and are ready to win now. The White Sox want to finally get out of the rebuilding phase, and could build around Harper long term.
The Padres are the team that came from out of the blue, as they are still in rebuild mode and play in a massive pitcher's park. Still, Harper is meeting with Padres officials on Thursday in Las Vegas, so there's some fire behind that proverbial smoke.
The meeting between Bryce Harper and the San Diego Padres is about to start this afternoon, league sources tell ESPN. About to jump on @SportsCenter to talk about why the Padres would be a good fit for Harper..— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 31, 2019
When it seemed like he was a lock for the Yankees or Cubs, Harper might end up in a small market or back in Washington. Who called that?