Harper, 26, signed a record-breaking 13-year, $330 million contract with the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday, setting the all-time record for largest free agent signing in American sports history in the process.
At $330 million over 13 years, Harper will make more money than the annual median household income of Philadelphia every at-bat, according to Rovell.
Harper gets a $20 million signing bonus in equal installments this June 1 and November 1, a $10 million salary this year, $26 million in each of the following nine seasons and $22 million in each of the last three years. It's a record Major League Baseball deal in terms of overall money that's also noteworthy in that it includes no opt-outs and has a full no-trade clause. At just 26 years old, Harper became the most coveted man in baseball, right next to Manny Machado.
The Phillies were presumably the highest bidder among several teams reportedly interested in Harper's services including the Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants and his former Washington Nationals.
Bryce Harper's primary goal in free agency was to put himself in position not to go through the process again. Still, the Phillies are presently relying on a trio of unproven starters - Nick Pivetta, Zach Eflin, Vince Velasquez - behind ace Aaron Nola and veteran Jake Arrieta. Harper finished the season with the 10th highest OPS in the National League.
With Washington's Nationals Park hosting the 2018 All-Star Game, Harper stole the show the day before the Midsummer Classic by winning the Home Run Derby before an ecstatic crowd filled with folks wearing his No. 34 Nationals jersey.
But that eventually ran its course.
Harper is coming off his sixth All-Star game in seven seasons, though it was arguably one of his worst, highlighted by a.249 batting average.
It's true that teams have generally shied away. While going to a new team was probably best for Harper's career, it's important to note that the $300 million offer from the Nats is not what it seemed.