Some new info trickled out on the Bryce Harper front Wednesday, with ESPN's Jeff Passan writing that the White Sox are willing to guarantee a 10-year deal to the biggest name on the free-agent market.
Or maybe not.
Hours later, The Score's Bruce Levine followed that up with a report of his own, one saying the White Sox won't go past seven years with either Harper or fellow mega free agent Manny Machado.
This ping-ponging might have the initial smack of negotiating through the media, but there's reasons to believe either could be true.
After all, the financially flexible White Sox have the ability to offer a gargantuan contract like a 10-year deal. And with challenges on either or both the Harper and Machado fronts from the 100-win New York Yankees, NL-champion Los Angeles Dodgers and "spend stupid" Philadelphia Phillies, their ability to potentially offer more than any other team — they currently have almost no long-term financial commitments to speak of — could give them an edge. Heck, it might be the only way to get an edge.
But the White Sox also don't need either of these guys for 2019, or really at all. While a swath of the fan base has declared that the offseason will be a failure if neither Harper nor Machado come to the South Side, the White Sox rebuilding plans will not at all be negatively impacted should these guys go elsewhere.