And even though spring training games will soon get underway, don't expect that to speed up the process to sign Harper. Thus, he is likely to hit the open market entering his age-31 season rather than his age-29 season - a big difference, based upon how teams continue to recoil at any free agent whose age begins with a "3". One key hurdle to him signing there was the fact that they only want to offer Harper a short-term, high-dollar contract, which will reportedly be a deal-breaker for Harper. But Machado has not accepted that offer because he is weighing his options.
The Yankees and Chicago Cubs were once thought to be among the list of possible destinations for Harper, but neither team has made him a contract offer this winter.
Machado's batting average last season was.297 which isn't the best, but for a guy who wants more than $175 million.
Things could've been a lot different if the team had traded for Bryce Harper, because they were actually close to pulling it off.
Philadelphia is largely expected to land one of the star free agents, and most of the signs are pointing toward them getting Harper.
The Yankees were the initial favorites with even the player said to prefer a move to NY over other cities, but their unwillingness to meet his financial demands - a 10-year deal north of $300 million - saw them drop in the pecking order.
In early November, Nightengale said you "can bank on" Harper signing with the Phillies.
"Slower than you guys think" would nearly mean Harper's impending offer is frozen in time, as it can't really get much slower.