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Oh, is it time for Bryce Harper-to-the-Yankees speculation already?

Jun 15, 2012, 11:00 AM EDT

Nationals Harper looks at his home run against the Blue Jays during the third inning of their MLB Interleague baseball game in Toronto

You knew this was coming eventually. And really, I ain’t even mad. Because this is so obviously calculated to troll people as opposed to being that classic “the Yankees must obtain every good player ever” kind of chatter that annoys us so that this works better as parody than it does as any sort of analysis:

By November, 2018, The Decision could be in the hands of Bryce Aron Max Harper. At that time, Harper will just have turned 26 … and he may be the undisputed king of baseball.  The Yankees will no longer have the contracts of Alex Rodriguez or Derek Jeter or Mark Teixeira. There will likely be new big names with big deals that take their place, but surely they will find enough money to pay Harper, if he wants to come … It might even be inevitable.

Next up: copy and paste it with Mike Trout.

  1. RedHeadedBastard - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:05 AM

    That’s a clown question, bro!

    • brian32556 - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:09 PM

      Let’s face it – HE wants to become a Yankee. So it has nothing to do with the usual “the Yankees must obtain every good player ever.” His father loved Mickey Mantle and the Yanks and so does he. So don’t make something else out of it.

  2. shaggylocks - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:06 AM

    Wait, they won’t have A-Rod and Jeter under contract in 2018? I thought they had those guys signed well into their 60s…

    • surefooted1 - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:33 PM

      No. You have it wrong. While they will be signed well into their 60’s, it will be from stupid new contracts. lol

    • ajcardsfan - Jun 15, 2012 at 1:13 PM

      That was the plan until the Cloning trials were shut down and they realized they could no longer have multiple 28 year old versions of Jeter and A-Rod.

  3. aceshigh11 - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    Strasburg and Harper for Jeter and A-Rod, straight-up.

    • Jeremy T - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:30 AM

      As a Yankee fan: hecka yes
      As a logical, non-brain-damaged, thinking human being: … I don’t think so

      • aceshigh11 - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:55 AM

        Ha! I’m obviously just taking the piss. That would be absurd on every level.

    • number42is1 - Jun 15, 2012 at 1:24 PM

      yea man.. i mean no WAY those two are worth Arod AND Jeter..

    • Jeremy T - Jun 15, 2012 at 1:53 PM

      On the other hand, if this is some kind of hypothetical time-traveling deal, where it’s A-Rod and Jeter from the mid-to-late 90’s, it might actually be a fun discussion. Knowing how Jeter and (especially) A-Rod turn out tilt it in favor of the old guys, but if the two Nats hit their ceilings… which would you take?

  4. seeinred87 - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:08 AM

    This dude is, and allow me to apologize for the harsh language, a dunderhead.

    He says, “Just the other day, the 19-year-old got caught on Twitter rooting for the Yankees. Still rooting for the Yankees, that is,” then links to a Twitter post from October (Harper deleted his Twitter account months ago).


  5. thefalcon123 - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:12 AM

    –Bryce Harper is a good ball player.
    –Bryce Harper will likely develop into an ever better ballplayer
    –There is an excellent chance that Harper will rank among the elite players in the game at 26 (he may now, but a lot of guys have had 40 great games. There will probably be some slumps and busting out of slumps to come).

    But to declare a 19-year-old with 41 games of big league experience his league’s equivalent to LeBron James is so embarrassingly ignorant of the nature of baseball, the only proper way to respond with an “ahhh…fuck you dude!”.

    • bigharold - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:48 AM

      Lighten up. You didn’t expect logic or reason did you?

      Hey Marchand has to write something to get attention, .. even if it’s bat shit crazy.

    • davidpom50 - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:51 AM

      I think the comparisons are about the hype around Harper and James – both were on the cover of national sports magazines as 15 year olds, and were household names before they were ever drafted. Both made business moves nobody had ever seen before, with LeBron signing a $90 million shoe contract before he was drafted and Harper leaving high school 2 years early to get into the draft ahead of anyone else his age.

      Bryce has a LONG way to go to prove his talent can match the hype like LeBron did, but he sure isn’t flaming out quick, either.

      • number42is1 - Jun 15, 2012 at 1:25 PM

        you forgot another one… they both have had balls in their mouths.

    • whatthehellisansky - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:08 PM

      I dont understand why Harper is the automatic LeBron comparison…so far Trout has been better? no?

      • heyblueyoustink - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:42 PM

        “I would not say such things if I were you.”

      • Jeremy T - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:45 PM

        yeah but Trout didn’t have the same level of hype going back to high school. Both Harper and LeBron have had ridiculous expectations from day 1. Really from even before day 1. Trout was taken 25th overall. Certainly not overlooked, but it’s not the same as being #1.

        So as far as success at the highest level of their respective sports, Trout might end up having more similarities to LeBron. But by the way the media has treated them, Harper is the closer comparison.

      • number42is1 - Jun 15, 2012 at 1:33 PM

        Excellent Princess Bride reference

      • kinggw - Jun 15, 2012 at 2:51 PM

        In my opinion they have been about even in terms of production. Also this is Bryce’s first go round. Trout was up for a few months last season and I think that has helped him this season.Trout has been allowed to mature as a player in relative anonymity while everything Harper has done since age 16 is under a microscope. To me that gives Harper the slight advantage.

  6. cur68 - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:13 AM

    Meh. Kid’s ROY, no doubt about it. But there’s many a slip ‘tween dress & drawers, as my old Aunt Mable used to say. 2018 is a long ways off. Only the deeply crazed get worked up by this prediction. over to you, various and sundry NYY trolls who hang around trying to irritate everyone else

    • kkolchak - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:15 PM

      Yep–somehow, Ken Griffey Jr, Barry Bonds, Frank Thomas, Roy Halladay, Tony Gwinn, and Albert Puljous, just to name a few, have managed to go their whole careers without ending up on the Yankees. My prediction is that Strasburg will accept an extension beyond his initial free agency eligibility date due to his much higher injury risk, but that Harper will test the waters as soon as he is eligible looking for “A-Rod money.” The thing is, to the Nats’ ownership group, A-Rod money is pocket change, so there is no guarantee the Yankees could get him even if he is on a HOF trajectory at that time..

      • henryd3rd - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:48 PM

        And everyone of those players you named used their leverage to secure huge contracts with their clubs as a result of the Yankees’ influence on their respective teams. Many a free agents use the Yankees to get their money.

        One more thing how many World Series rings did Halladay get in Toronto? How many World Series rings do Griffey and Bonds own? And didn’t Kenny Williams gladly let that pain in the ass Thomas walk after he constantly complained about his contract status? And is Albert still hitting HR’s in St. Louis?

        They are all mercenaries when it comes to their contract and you and I both know that they couldn’t have done it without the Yankees’ influence

  7. danaking - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:16 AM

    I clicked the link and stopped reading as soon as I saw it was an ESPN story. They have become the Fox news of sports, ginning up whatever they can instead of actually reporting anything. They’re dead to me.

    • approvenothing - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:46 PM

      Are we talking bout CNN or Fox? I believe you are mixing up the two…

      • meteor32 - Jun 15, 2012 at 3:42 PM

        It’s definitely not CNN because unfortunately people watch ESPN.

      • mybrunoblog - Jun 15, 2012 at 5:08 PM

        Most people stopped watching CNN in like 1998….is Larry King still drawing breath?

  8. kopy - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:19 AM

    If the Yankees (and anyone else) could bid on Harper like a free agent right now, what would he get? 20 years, $600 million? I’d love to see that happen, and see how well it turns out.

    • Jeremy T - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:32 AM

      See, now THAT would be an article I’d want to read. Come on ESPN, if you’re going to do useless speculation, at least make it somewhat interesting useless speculation.

  9. cereal blogger - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:24 AM

    Mormons are not allowed to live in NYC

    • CliffC - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:23 PM

      You’re mistaking NYC for the White House

      • henryd3rd - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:51 PM

        No politics here please!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • henryd3rd - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:50 PM

      You’re right! George Steinbrenner lived in Tampa and came from Cleveland! Nuff said

      • nolanwiffle - Jun 15, 2012 at 1:50 PM

        I believe the man said “Mormons”……not morons.

  10. churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:27 AM

    Kind of surprised the Nationals haven’t approached either him or Strasburg for a contract extension a la Moore/Longoria. Would either of them turn down a 10/$75M deal? Lock them up fast, give them a lot more financial security than they already have, and the only risk is injury (Strasburg more than Harper).

    • ezthinking - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:42 AM

      Sure they have, more sure they would get shot out of the water at that price. Gonna have to wait a couple of years, closer to arb eligible i would think. Boras isn’t the idiot that Moore and Longoria’s advisers.

      • churchoftheperpetuallyoutraged - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:16 PM

        Those advisers weren’t idiots though. If Harper hits a game winning HR, then blows his knee out like Kendrys Morales did, his career could be over. Strasburg has already had one surgery. Yes both signed million dollar deals from the draft so they have a bit of financial well being already, but giving up future dollars for financial security that comes with a long term deal isn’t stupid.

        What if it was 10/$100M or 10/$150M for Harper? Would it be dumb then? Would a 19 year old turn down a $150M contract right now in the hopes that he gets something more in 6 years?

    • kkolchak - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:08 PM

      The Nats have already started locking down their young players. Ryan Zimmerman was first, and they have already been in talks with Jordan Zimmermann. They have Strasburg for four more years and Harper for six, so there is no urgency yet. On thing that gets overlooked is that the Nats’ owenrship group is the richest in baseball. If they WANT to pay both Strasburg and Harper down the road, they CAN. They just don’t have to make that decision for awhile yet.

      • 18thstreet - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:37 PM

        Every owner in baseball is rich enough to give that kind of money to any player they want. The owners of the Royals and Twins have more money than you and I can dream of. I’m not 100 percent sure of my point here, but the wealth of the Lerner family will have very little to do with the value of the contracts their best players receive; it’s about their willingness to spend it on baseball players instead of private islands in the Caribbean.

        The rich, they are very different from you and me. They own baseball teams. — F. Scott Fitzgerald.

  11. greymares - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:41 AM

    can we wait to see if the kid can keep his hat size under a 12 first. because if he can’t it doesn’t matter.

    • dan1111 - Jun 15, 2012 at 5:55 PM

      Because no one with a big ego has ever succeeded in baseball.

  12. APBA Guy - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:44 AM

    This is funny because as we were watching BBTN before work this morning, my girlfriend asked me when the Yankees were going to go after Harper.

    I told her my guess is that Cashman would wait until he had at least 1,000 AB’s, then decide whether to go after him or Trout. Or Kershaw.

  13. mybrunoblog - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:53 AM

    2018? Really? I have trouble planning for next month never mind over six years from now. Then again. There is a 10 year old tearing up the local travel baseball scene here…. By 2020 he’ll be draft eligible….Just mentioning….

  14. sdelmonte - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:53 AM

    Even as we speak, the Yankees are analyzing the DNA samples of every male born in the past ten years, and preparing to offer contracts to the 25 found most likely to possess the Yankee gene.

    • whatthehellisansky - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:12 PM

      Not sure if your aim was humor – but thats pretty gad damn funny

      • dan1111 - Jun 16, 2012 at 1:59 PM

        The funniest part of this, to me, is your suggestion that it might be meant seriously.

  15. kevinbnyc - Jun 15, 2012 at 11:57 AM

    And 7-8 years ago I’m pretty sure an identical article was written about Grady Sizemore.

    • henryd3rd - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:54 PM

      Grady must ave done something bad to someone in another life. How could one guy have such bad luck?

      • dan1111 - Jun 15, 2012 at 5:58 PM

        His luck is so bad that he’s been paid over $23,000,000 to play a game.

        Yeah, injuries really stink, I’m sure, but a little perspective is in order.

    • Gonzo - Jun 16, 2012 at 8:13 PM

      I bet Grady would give back that $23Mil in order to play the next 10 years healthy at the Major League minimum.

  16. voteforno6 - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    Actually, the economics of baseball has changed quite a bit. Now that the other teams are signing these lucrative TV deals with the regional sports networks, the Yankees (and Red Sox) no longer have such an advantage. Plus, with the changes to the CBA, I’m not so sure that they can blow up their payroll by signing a bunch of free agents, like they have in the past. The owners of the Nationals are very wealthy, and if they get the expected bump in revenue from the MASN reset (yet another reason to hate Peter Angelos), then the team will certainly be able to pay Harper the money, if they (and he) are so inclined.

  17. theawesomersfranchise - Jun 15, 2012 at 12:53 PM

    The Nats can and would outbid the Yankees for Harper, last I checked George has passed away and Lerner is a billionaire 3 times over.

    • Jeremy T - Jun 15, 2012 at 4:28 PM

      I like the “last I checked” there. Like we’re constantly on the lookout for Zombie-George.

    • mybrunoblog - Jun 15, 2012 at 5:12 PM

      Werner is a billionaire because he doesn’t spend $250 million on 10 year contracts….he is wealthy not stupid.

  18. florida76 - Jun 15, 2012 at 1:46 PM

    Bryce Harper has already gone on record saying he wants to play for the Yankees, this was prior to his draft selection. The big question will be looking forward, is how the years with Washington affect his view on the matter. It’s a classic black or white issue, either Harper wants to stay a Nat, or the pull of the Yankees will be too much. Young people change their minds when they get older, and sometimes they don’t.

    • kinggw - Jun 15, 2012 at 3:09 PM

      I think more than anything Harper wants to win. In 6 years the Nats will still have their core and will be competitive. The Yankees, not so much. They were successful because they built around the core of Jeter, Posada and Rivera. What franchise players do they have in the pipes? Forget about Harper, six years from now the Yankees may be searching for relevance.

      • Jeremy T - Jun 15, 2012 at 4:31 PM

        People have been trumpeting the demise of the Yankees for a while now. Eventually it’ll happen, but I’m not gonna hold my breath or make any specific predictions.

  19. sparky1002 - Jun 17, 2012 at 11:35 AM

    Yanks are getting older every day…the team is one of the oldest in the collective years of its players. It`s a smart GM that understands the value in looking out for new and competitive talent at a price that reflects their ability to play. With the bankroll at the Yankees disposal, all talented players are fair game. Show me a wealthy ballclub that does any different.

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