Bryce Harper Rumors: Phillies may not have as much competition as expected

Bryce Harper Rumors: Phillies may not have as much competition as expected

CARLSBAD, Calif. – Notes, quotes, and observations of how the annual General Manager Meetings of Baseball come to an end, and what promises to be a busy, new Phillies offseason, is getting hot.

• Is Carlos Santana traded?

• The latest on trade talks between Cesar Hernandez and Maikel Franco.

• Will the Phillies land the desired helper at the time of trading?

The general consensus at the GM meetings had the Phillies as favorites for the landing of Bryce Harper. The Phils have the interest and the money and the competition for Harper may not be as fierce as expected as the Dodgers and Cubs watch the payroll, the Giants still formulate a off-season plan and give the Yankees the weakness that they are the players will not pursue. Of course, everything is flowing at this time of year and with a phone call this can change.

Harper's agent, Scott Boras, mocked reports that the Yankees would serve up the Harper contests.

"I remember that in October or November (2008) they said the same thing about Mark Teixeira," Boras said. "And if I were her, I would bring it out too. See, this is a submarine race, not a regatta. You do not want other teams to know that you are interested in a generation player. "

Prior to the 2009 season, Teixeira signed with the Yankees a $ 180 million contract over eight years.

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More about the Phillies

You may have seen this photo, from which people freaked out; it's not something to worry about, is it?

Somebody shot this impressive White Sox photo at the United Center in Chicago, home of the Bulls and Blackhawks, and it's made the rounds on social media. It has been deleted from its original location, but the magic of the Internet – and screenshots – has brought it back to life.

To add more to this story, the Chicago White Sox phenomenon pitcher Michael Kopech posted a strange message on his Instagram about what number 34 means to him, namely the number Harper carried in Washington and the same number appearing on the Marquee is displayed in Chicago.

What does that mean?

Originally, I thought the photo from the United Center meant absolutely nothing, but Kopech's IG Post on October 30 made me wonder if the White Sox asked for permission to give Harper the number.

On Wednesday, we saw a series of reports that the Phillies were able to commit the coveted outfielder (see story)but the White Sox are definitely a team that can offer something the Phillies can.

Ultimately, I do not think that's something to worry about. It is no secret that some teams beat Harper. The image of the United Center could have been a Blackhawks employee having fun or playing a joke, as far as we know.

Soon speculation will be over and Harper will either be the most popular baseball player in Philadelphia or the most hated player of an opposing team.

Click here to download NBC Sports' new MyTeams app! Get comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games to your device.

More about the Phillies

In this issue of At The Yard, Jim Salisbury (from California) and Corey Seidman give the latest from the GM Meetings.

Should the Phillies be favorites for the landing of Bryce Harper? How will the bad October of Manny Machado affect his free agency?

A look at which players from the 2018 squad may not return to Philadelphia next season.

1:00 – Harper's free agency.
8:30 – Pitching options for the Phillies.
6:00 pm – Machado's free agent lookout after a bad October.
22:00 – Are the Phillies with Scott Kingery or J.P. Crawford at the SS okay?
24:30 – What is the future of Maikel Franco?
27:00 – Will Carlos Santana trade this off season?

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