The Washington Nationals threw in the towel on the 2018 season on Tuesday, dealing both Matt Adams and Daniel Murphy. But according to a report, Bryce Harper will not be going anywhere.
Jon Heyman of Fancred noted that the waivers on Harper have expired, meaning he’ll remain in Washington.
sources: waivers have expired on Bryce harper. he is staying with nats.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) August 21, 2018
Overall, the 2018 season hasn’t been great for Harper. He has 30 home runs and has a respectable .380 OBP and .511 slugging percentage. Even still, a .246 batting average is well below his capability.
That said, he’s been very strong in the second half of the season. Since the All-Star break, Harper has hit seven home runs and has backed it up with a .350/.436/.650 slash line. That’s a stark contrast to the .214/.365/.468 line that he had before the break.
While we wouldn’t have been shocked to see Harper moved, Tuesday’s news is less than surprising.
Harper is a free agent at season’s end. If the Nats were going to get good compensation for him, the time was before the non-waiver deadline on July 31. That way, teams could at least get Harper’s services for two months, plus a possible playoff run.
With little more than a month to go in the regular season, Harper would be not only a rental, but a short-term rental. That certainly limits what teams around the league would be willing to give Washington.
With Harper staying with the club, the Nationals will receive a compensation pick should they fail to re-sign him in the offseason.