Bryce Harper is a Phillie, finally. It was a long, drawn-out process that turned fans insane and made reporters stupid. But the seeming interminability of it all ultimately served Harper’s purposes: It wasn’t until this last week that the Phillies offered record money or a 13-year contract. Harper and Scott Boras waited out the market, even as the market tried to wait them out, but in the end, it wasn’t Harper that blinked.
Harper’s deal is for 13 years and $330 million, and it’s a monster of a deal, eclipsing Giancarlo Stanton’s 13/$325M. Harper very much wanted quantity on both sides of that slash, we’re told in this tick-tock by SI’s Tom Verducci. He wanted the record, and, from the very beginning of his free agency, he reportedly told Boras to “prioritize length of contract.”Outstream Video
The Phillies’ initial offer was for 10 years, and that offer stood for nearly four full months with Philadelphia refusing to budge. The Phillies felt confident their offer wouldn’t be topped, and seemed justified in their confidence, as for the longest time there weren’t any other serious bidders. But that lack of a market may have benefited Harper—all the chatter about the lack of offers is what convinced the Dodgers and Giants they had a chance, and to swoop in with serious offers after the start of spring training. That finally spooked the Phillies into raising their offer to 13 years.