Farhan Zaidi Says Bryce Harper, Giants Have Mutual Interest After Meeting

Mike Chiari@mikechiariFeatured ColumnistFebruary 8, 2019

Washington Nationals' Bryce Harper in action during the first game of a baseball doubleheader against the Philadelphia Phillies, Tuesday, Sept. 11, 2018, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Matt Slocum/Associated Press

San Francisco Giants President of Baseball Operations Farhan Zaidi offered a positive update Friday regarding the team's talks with free-agent outfielder Bryce Harper.

According to Ann Killion of the San Francisco Chronicle, Zaidi said, "There's mutual interest on both sides."

Henry Schulman and John Shea of the San Francisco Chronicle reported that Zaidi, Giants manager Bruce Bochy and Giants president Larry Baer met with Harper in Las Vegas this week.

The Giants are seemingly making a play for Harper after rarely being mentioned as a suitor for his services throughout the offseason.

Harper has been closely linked to the Philadelphia Phillies, Chicago White Sox and San Diego Padres, as well as a potential return to the Washington Nationals.

Along with All-Star infielder Manny Machado, Harper is somewhat surprisingly still available with spring training set to begin.

The 26-year-old Harper is a six-time All-Star and one-time National League MVP during his seven-year MLB career, and he is coming off a season that saw him slash .249/.393/.496 with 34 home runs and a career-high 100 RBI.

Since winning three World Series titles in five years from 2010-2014, the Giants have struggled in recent seasons.

Over the past four campaigns, San Francisco has just one playoff appearance. It has posted a losing record in each of the past two seasons as well, including a 73-89 mark in 2018.

Last season, the Giants ranked 29th in Major League Baseball in scoring, 29th in home runs and 25th in batting average.

Harper would provide the Giants with a massive offensive boost and a much-needed star in what may be the worst outfield in the entire league.

With Harper, Buster Posey, Brandon Belt and Evan Longoria supporting a starting rotation led by Madison Bumgarner, the Giants would have a chance to be far more competitive in the talented NL West than they have been in recent years.

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