Alright, lets get weird.
The Washington Nationals were considered to be buyers at the trade deadline not too long ago. They acquired Kelvin Herrera to bolster their bullpen and were coming off a promising stretch that made it look like they were about to make their run towards the top of the division that many expected.
Fast forward to the end of July and it is a vastly different situation. The Nationals currently sit at 52-53 and six games back in the division with Philadelphia and Atlanta both ahead of them and other teams in the NL in better position in the Wild Card race as well. There were whispers that the team could consider selling some pieces if their series against the Marlins didn’t go well. Well, apparently they have made a big decision.
According to a source, the Nationals are making it known to other teams that Bryce Harper is indeed available.— Mark Feinsand (@Feinsand) July 31, 2018
Basically everyone knows that Bryce Harper is going to be a free agent after this season, but there were no real indications that the Nationals were going to try and move on from him. He is still a big time power bat with a ridiculous walk rate even though the batting average has been poor this season and he is still going to make a ton of money this offseason. He is the type of player that can turn a trade market upside down in a hurry and many of the teams that were looking at controllable pitchers are going to look really hard at the possibility of acquiring Harper now.
What the Nationals’ asking price will be remains to be seen, although the deal for Manny Machado is a decent starting point although the Nationals could honestly get a bit less than that. However, it is also possible that a couple of teams fall in love and/or panic and drive up the price in a frenzied market.
Get strapped in folks, tomorrow is going to be really interesting.