I was the ring leader of the “Bring Bryce Harper to the Giants” circus during the offseason. I even wrote an embarrassing letter to try and convince him to wear Orange and Black.
I should have had it notarized.
Anyways, we’ve moved on — I’m still working through some feelings, but he is now a member of the Philadelphia Phillies. But Harper recently opened up about the final days before he made his decision. And it turns out, the Giants were on his mind more than we realized.
“I had just met with Larry and Farhan about two days before,” Harper told The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal in an interview with FS1. “The Dodgers came in right after them. They were saying, ‘We can go four years,’ that kind of thing. I was like, ‘That’s probably not going to work for me. I want long-term.’ I was very appreciative of the money, but I wanted long-term.
“The next day was Thursday. Scott (Boras) called me at like 9 a.m. I was still sleeping, still laying in bed. He says, ‘Hey, we have an offer from the Phillies. Here’s what they’re willing to do.’ I said, ‘Hey, have you heard back from San Fran?’ He said he hadn’t heard back from them yet. I said, ‘OK, once you hear back from San Fran, let me know.'”
That’s when Harper and his wife, Kayla, talked it out a bit. For them, it was about finding a place that was best for their family and where they would be “cared about as individuals and not just Bryce the baseball player.”
“We sat there and talked for a little bit. And I remember standing there, me hugging her and saying, ‘Hey, we’re going to Philly.’ That was before we even heard from San Fran,” Harper said. “San Fran called back, offered whatever it was. By that point, it was kind of like, ‘I’m already a Philadelphia Phillie.’ In my heart, I was already a Philadelphia Phillie. It was nothing against San Francisco. They’re a great organization. It’s a great city. It just came down to what I felt. And by that point, it was Philly.”
[RELATED: Bruce Bochy comments on pursuit of Harper]
The Giants offered Harper a 12-year, $310 million contract, but it turns out he had made up his mind by then.
What could have been.