Ten Years And $300 Million? Not Good Enough, Says Bryce Harper

Report: Bryce Harper Turned Down $300 Million Contract From Nationals

In the meantime, Harper will continue to field offers from other teams in hopes of landing a record-setting deal.

The debate over where the stars would land has raged for months, and according to a new column from USA Today Sports MLB insider Bob Nightengale, the Phillies are the leaders in the clubhouse for Harper.

The free agent outfielder declined the offer and opted for free agency.

Harper rejected a 10-year offer worth $300 million from the Nationals late this past season. The deal would have been the second-richest in Major League Baseball history, trailing only Giancarlo Stanton's $325 million contract with the Miami Marlins signed in 2014, and the third-richest in sports history.

It gained even more traction earlier this week when Harper's agent, Scott Boras, told MLB Network Radio that the 26-year-old right fielder would be a more-than-capable first baseman. Looks like they want to get the bad taste of Dexter Fowler's deal out of their mouth and throw some more money to big-name free agents! Indeed, the Nationals need starting pitching, a catcher and to upgrade their bench. It will cost them roughly $US13 million.

"I'm comfortable with the alternative (to signing Harper)", Rizzo said Tuesday. It would take a hefty contract to sign Harper, though, and it remains to be seen if the Dodgers are willing to dish that out. "There is a reality that we would love to sign him, but we may not". For the moment, it seems he and Boras will explore options elsewhere. Boras also has Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg as clients.

Boras tabbed Harper as a "generational" and "iconic" player - citing the Nationals' stark increase in attendance, television ratings and overall franchise value since Harper joined the team.

Zack Greinke ($US34 million), David Price ($US31 million) and Clayton Kershaw ($US31 million) all got more.

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