This couldn't have been the way super agent Scott Boras drew it up.
With just weeks until spring training, the Bryce Harper sweepstakes could be down to just two known teams: the Phillies and Chicago White Sox.
Well, at least that's the opinion of USA Today's Bob Nightengale after outfielder A.J. Pollock signed with the Los Angeles Dodgers, a team that was always rumored to be sitting on the outskirts of the Harper market.
As for Harper?
The Philadelphia Phillies still are the heavy favorite to land him. The Chicago White Sox have interest but have made no offer. And no other teams publicly are involved.
Why, the Washington Nationals, who offered Harper a 10-year, deferred contract worth about $284 million at the season's conclusion, may no longer be in play.