Bryce Harper Talked to Mike Trout 'A Lot' Before Signing $330M Phillies Contract

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMarch 3, 2019

Los Angeles Angels Mike Trout, left, and Washington Nationals Bryce Harper, right, during warm ups before the start of their baseball game, Wednesday, April 23, 2014 in Washington. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Pablo Martinez Monsivais/Associated Press

Before deciding to sign with the Philadelphia Phillies, Bryce Harper sought the advice from one of Major League Baseball's biggest stars who knows the city very well. 

After his introductory press conference Saturday, Harper explained the role Mike Trout played in his decision, according to MLB.com's Todd Zolecki

"I talked to him a lot," Harper said of the two-time American League MVP. "From November, all the way through the process."

Trout was born near Philadelphia in Vineland, New Jersey. He grew up a fan of the city's sports teams and still regularly shows up at Eagles and 76ers games. 

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"I played with him in the [Arizona] Fall League [in 2011], and we've kept in contact over the last seven years," Harper said. "But just trying to get a hometown kid to tell me what he felt, how he felt about the organization and the area and things like that. He's a kid who grew up seeing the Phillies have success, so going through those times with the fans and things like that. It was good to get his perspective and hear how he felt."

Whatever Trout told Harper worked, as the 2015 National League MVP signed a 13-year, $330 million deal Saturday to join the Phillies. 

Harper's comments will add more speculation about the Phillies possibly attempting to go after Trout when he becomes a free agent after 2020. 

In the meantime, though, the Phillies can rest easy knowing that Harper will be the centerpiece of their lineup for the next 13 years. They will look to make the playoffs this season for the first time since 2011.