Tuesday afternoon on SportsRadio 94WIP’s Marks and Reese Show, Bryce Harper hopped on to discuss many things during his 20-minute interview. In that list were the reasons he wanted to come to Philly, who sold him on Philly, and who he possibly will try to sell Philly on in the coming years as a recruiter for the ball club.
One big potential free agent in two years is our homeboy, Mike Trout. And Harper hasn’t minced any words when discussing the possibility of luring Trout to Philly once he’s set to hit free agency after the 2020 season.
Of course, Trout’s current team of the L.A. Angels of Los Anaheim Angels Los Angeles have contacted MLB already, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Angels general manager Billy Eppler said in a text message to the L.A. Times that he is aware of the comments and, “We’ve been in touch with MLB and we have no further comment at this time.
MLB has rules on tampering that prevent players from enticing others to join clubs that are not their own while they are still under contract, even in a hypothetical sense. The league has reprimanded players for enticing others to join their teams in the past, such as when David Ortiz received a warning letter for publicly lobbying the Boston Red Sox to sign Edwin Encarnacion in 2016. The league can also issue fines.
On Tuesday, Harper said you’d be crazy to think he wouldn’t try to get Trout to Philly in 2020.
“I can be able to talk to Trout, or whoever it is, big-name free agent or whoever wants to come to Philly or is thinking about coming to Philly, I can say ‘Hey, this is the place to be. This is where the fans are great, ownership understands it, our manager is awesome.’ I can really put that faith in myself in being able to say we are able to go about it the right way, we are the Philadelphia Phillies and we want whoever wants to come to Philly. If you don’t want to come to Philly, then don’t come. Don’t be part of it. But if you want to come be part of a winning team and a winning culture, then we are going to need the best players to do that. I don’t think John [Middleton] is scared to go out and get the best guys we need to have. I think it’s respecting Mike Trout in a certain way during the season, and letting him play and do the things he needs to do to of course be Mike Trout.
“If you don’t think I’m not gonna call Mike Trout in 2020 to have him come to Philly, you’re crazy.”
Phillies fans – yours truly included – were whipped into a frenzy because of Harper’s comments. It’s almost like if Trout doesn’t come to Philly, it’ll be a letdown.
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