Friday, 22 March, 2019

‘Mystery team’ involved in Manny Machado free agency sweepstakes

REPORTS: Manny Machado Still Seeking More Than $325 Million, Yankees Out DJ LeMahieu, Yankees Agree On 2-Year Contract
Frederick Owens | 13 January, 2019, 15:39

It has been more than three weeks since Machado met with the Yanks in NY, and Jack Curry of the YES Network reports that there has been barely any communication between the two sides over that period.

The 26-year-old Machado met with the Yankees at Yankee Stadium last month, part of a tour that also brought him to Philadelphia, as well as Chicago, where he met with the White Sox. The free agent process for both players has been slow to this point, but it looks like the market for Machado may finally be heating up, and may even involve a mystery team. The deal is expected to be "in the $24 million range", per The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal. But if Bryce Harper were to return, that would be a pretty large cherry on top of their business so far.

It appears they are likely, not definitely, out on Machado now. The Phillies reportedly prefer Machado, and their pursuit of the infielder could increase over the next few days.

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I'll believe the Yankees are out on Manny Machado when I see him wearing another team's jersey at his introductory news conference.

The Phillies are the third team to unsuccessfully make a run at Harper after he previously met with the White Sox and Dodgers, though reports have suggested Chicago and Philadelphia are the only teams willing to offer the veteran a 10-year deal. The Phillies ranked 23rd with a payroll just north of $100 million last season, and ownership has made it clear that the organization is ready to hand out lucrative contracts this offseason.

The Yankees have been considered the Phillies' biggest obstacle to landing Machado because of the idea that he's wanted for years to play in the Bronx.

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