Bryce Harper: Could The Mariners Pull Off A Blockbuster Trade?

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Oct 7, 2014; San Francisco, CA, USA; Washington Nationals left fielder Bryce Harper hits a solo home run against the San Francisco Giants in the 7th inning during game four of the 2014 NLDS baseball playoff game at AT&T Park. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

The Mariners lost out on Melky Cabrera, as he signed a 3 year deal with the Chicago White Sox. When the M’s weren’t willing to go a 4th year, Melky decided to stay east and play in Chicago.

So now what do the Mariners do in right field? Sure, they could move Brad Miller out there. They could also sign Alex Rios or Nori Aoki (more on him in another post).

But what about going bigger than anyone else this offseason: make a blockbuster deal with the Washington Nationals that includes a young right fielder by the name of Bryce Harper.

Before you call me crazy and comment about how I’m an idiot, hear me out. ESPN reported on Saturday that Bryce Harper did not attend NatsFest Fan Festival yesterday as the arbitration grievance hearing looms large.

Bryce Harper is only 22 years old and has already played 3 seasons in the MLB. He is under team control until 2019. So why would the Nats ever consider trading him?

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It seems as if their happy union isn’t so happy anymore. Harper wants the sort of contract extension that gets him through his arbitration years, much like Mike Trout or even Seattle’s own Kyle Seager. But the Nats have been slow to put anything together. As the frustration perpetuates, Bryce Harper becomes less and less likely to stick with the Nats when his clock is up. He will be a young 27 when he is a free agent, and could see boatloads of cash and lots of years– he’s a Scott Boras client.

If the Nationals know they won’t be able to keep Harper beyond 2018, they should strongly consider trading him to net a great return. Granted, they could wait a few years to do it, but why not now?

By sending a package of Jordan Zimmermann, Ian Desmond, and Bryce Harper to the Mariners, the Nationals would be dumping salary, one-year players, and drama. And of course they would get a big haul in return. But what sort of haul?