Indeed, this is the time of year when rumor turns to report on a dime. In this case – the Los Angeles Dodgers law of attraction has grown to undeniable proportions with Bryce Harper.
Per a report from Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan, Magic Johnson and other Dodgers officials traveled to Las Vegas to meet with Harper recently. That report, however, was later disputed by Johnson himself on Tuesday. Magic was not in attendance.
According to @JeffPassan, #Yankees “are among upward of a dozen teams that have traveled or plan to travel to Nevada to meet with” Bryce Harper. Magic Johnson recently led #Dodgers delegate that met with Harper in LV. https://t.co/EwW1a5Lx4l
— Max Wildstein (@MaxWildstein) December 4, 2018
Brown mentions that this is the second mega-star in a calendar year that Magic Johnson has helped a Los Angeles court.
Not five months ago, in his role as president of basketball operations for the Los Angeles Lakers, Magic Johnson led the recruitment and signing of LeBron James, perhaps altering the course of that franchise, definitely drawing a star to a city that breathes them. Recently, according to sources, Johnson and other Dodgers officials traveled to Las Vegas to meet with Harper. Johnson in 2012 bought into the Guggenheim Partners’ $2.15 billion purchase of the Dodgers with $50 million of his own, a 2-plus percent investment that is more significant for his name, reputation and L.A. credibility.
As the league’s owners begin the process that is Harper’s free agency – measuring his cost, his impact, his Q-rating, his on-base percentage, his durability – all beating a path to Vegas, the Dodgers, like the Lakers, led with Magic.
Now, it’s important to note that the article doesn’t say anything substantial beyond the Dodgers met with Harper. Moreover, Yahoo does a nice job of pointing out that the Dodgers have the money for Harper. However, their true interest may be another story. One simply cannot know at this juncture.
The take-home message is that the Dodgers are doing their due diligence on one of the biggest free agents in the history of the game. Indeed, they sent their superstar of the ownership group to meet with Harper. There are still blanks to be filled in.
We will have more on this story as it develops, or evaporates.
It’s possible I stand alone on this – but I don’t think Harper to the Dodgers happens in the end. With a glut of outfielders – Friedman has given mention to the luxury tax already this offseason. I realize it’s Bryce Harper, and the Dodgers seem to be pulling out all the stops in their pursuit. However, in the end; I think the Phillies do something just too insane for the Dodgers to compete with. We will know in a short time what threads Harper will wear in 2019. Do you feel like it will be Dodger blue? Do you want to see Harper in Los Angeles?
Let us know in the comments!Dave Roberts Signs Extension With Dodgers