The Nationals are already planning for life without Bryce Harper, according to a USA Today report, and the Yankees figure to be in play for the star outfielder.
But it will apparently come at an exorbitant price.
An anonymous high-ranking team executive reportedly told the paper that the 24-year-old, who becomes a free agent after 2018, is requesting a record contract that will pay him at least $400 million over at least 10 seasons.
Harper made $5 million last season and is eligible for arbitration in 2017, but his agent, Scott Boras, told USA Today that no talks about the future have taken place with Washington.
“I have had no long-term discussions with the Nationals on Bryce,” Boras said, according to the report. “No terms, no offers discussed. Only arbitration-year discussions.”
The Nationals, who are currently discussing a deal for All-Star outfielder Andrew McCutchen with the Pirates, did not comment on the report.
The 2015 NL MVP seems to fit the mold for the Yankees down the road, as the team’s youth movement and core of promising prospects develop. As the Bombers continue to trim payroll, their free agent options in 2019 include Orioles third baseman Manny Machado, as well as Mets starter Matt Harvey.
A 10-year, $400 million deal for Harper would easily eclipse the current MLB record held by Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton, who signed a 13-year, $325 million contract extension in 2014.
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