Despite rumors that certainly were suggestive of a market at least drawing near-ish to a close on both Manny Machado and Bryce Harper, Jeff Passan is out there to tell you things are still as cold as the [inserts lame weather simile].
Despite all the rumors bouncing around, Bryce Harper and Manny Machado came into today no closer to signing with a team than they’ve been since Nov. 1. Joined @RB_Mrs and @RandyScottESPN on @SportsCenter this morning and compared it all to The Good, the Bad and the Ugly. pic.twitter.com/bcJo3t9Ib2
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) January 29, 2019
If Passan isn’t exaggerating here, then there has been almost no significant movement in these markets since the VERY BEGINNING of the offseason, and here we now sit on the eve of freaking February. To be sure, many thought these races might carry into February, but in that event, the expectation would have been that there were a couple of very clear bidders at the table for each player, and it was just a matter of getting over that finish line.
Instead, the way Passan describes things, it’s just a staring contest, with Machado and Harper dug in trying to get enormous contracts (and each trying to get more than the other), and teams simply not going there.
Shrug. At least the Cubs are not believed to be even remotely involved in either pursuit at this point, so we don’t have to hang on every report. We can just be quizzical bystanders to the slow-motion drama. I guess a couple teams are just going to get an enormous infusion of talent at some point during Spring Training.