The Dodgers Never Sent Magic Johnson to Meet With Harper

One of the biggest pieces of news from the offseason was the Dodgers intense interest in Bryce Harper. There were reported meetings, scheduled Las Vegas flights, and even details on potential contract figures. But one of the most encouraging signs for Dodger fans was that apparently, Magic Johnson had traveled to meet with the free agent personally. Johnson, a Los Angeles legend, is part of the Dodgers’ ownership group. But apparently, he didn’t quite do his due diligence.

In an interview speaking with ESPN’s Tim Keown, Harper laughed at the idea of meeting with Johnson.

My favorite was the time we met with Magic Johnson and the Dodgers,” Bryce says. “That was a good one. We never met with him.

So there you have it. The perennial All-Star who ended up earning a ridiculous $330 million contract never met with Magic Johnson. There is no doubt that the two sides had at least some level of communication, considering the numbers that have been floated around. But to not meet with the figurehead of an organization looking to convince you to come to play for them is a pretty big deal.

Harper expanded on the idea of playing in Los Angeles a little bit, elaborating on the rumor mill that followed his every move.

During the seven years I spent in DC, all everybody talked about was me going somewhere else. From the day I signed, it was: ‘He’s going to the Yankees’; ‘He’s going to the Dodgers’; ‘He’s going to the Cubs.’ I didn’t want to hear that. I was in that city, and I wanted to be in that city. So now I’m just so happy that I’m able to sit here right now and say I can play until I’m 39 years old and I don’t have someone sitting around the corner saying, ‘He’s going to go here next.'”

Whatever the reason may be for the Dodgers NOT sending Johnson to meet with Harper, it was a pretty big bummer to miss out on him. Fortunately, the Dodgers still end up with one heck of an outfield heading into 2019. They signed AJ Pollock to a free agent deal and will have Cody Bellinger patrolling right field the majority of the year. Beyond that, they will have Joc Pederson, Enrique Hernandez, Chris Taylor, and Alex Verdugo competing for at-bats all year long.

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  1. The Dodger are built to compete for a decade. This team would never sign that type of insane contract for Harper. Pujos was much better than Harper may ever be. He is a first ballot HF player. Look at him now…

    Long Guaranteed contracts are not intelligent gambles for clubs they are only good for Agents and Players.

    I think the Pollock incentive laden deal was much smarter than signing Harper as Pollock is a Gold Glove center fielder, The NL West has several massive outfields we need great defense and Harper does not fit that equation.

  2. I agree, It’s a waste of money, the fans money. And the long contract is ridiculous. Harper is not super man. He can’t play every day for ten years. I never liked these multi million dollar/multi year contracts. I don’t recall many teams getting the best out of the deals. Everyone knows the player is just doing it for himself or herself. Players don’t care about the Fans ( not long term anyway). I’ve always liked the incentive Idea. Pay for how you perform. Almost everyone knows how that goes. Even doing that the player would make enough money to retire his whole Family and probably a few friends. If you really want to have a multi year contract make it to where as you perform less you get less pay. All owners can figure out how to manage this.
    It’s past the time for owners to do something for the Fans and not just think about their pockets and players pockets. It’s hard for many Fans to attend Ball games with prices going up every year,they’ve made it hard for me and my family. Now I’m retired and it’s even harder.

  3. Magic’s a joke. Why would a baseball player be convinced by a basketball legend? He couldn’t even convince basketball players to join the Lakers. He only got Lebron because he’s setting up his post basketball career and family

  4. Again, Mr. Smith, please don’t speak for all Dodger fans. The majority are not upset that Harper didn’t sign here. Have you seen polls on what we think? About 77% of those polled were not unhappy with the outcome. You also claimed we were furious that Machado went to S.D. That is not even close to the truth, either.

    • They lined his and their beds with plenty of green stuff. They become a contender with their other moves, but eventually this contract will be an albatross as will Machado’s.