Nats’ Bryce Harper’s Value to Skyrocket to $400M-$500M After 2018

By Teddy Cecilio, Posted: 05/22/17 02:11AM EDT

If he continues his outstanding play, Washington Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper's market value could skyrocket to $400 to $500 million when he turns free agent after the 2018 season.

Currently, Harper is hitting .365 with 50 hits, 13 homers and 36 RBIs for the Nationals, who currently lead the NL East with a 25-16 mark.  If he continues that pace, Joe Giglio of believes Harper will finish the seas with 53 homers, 146 RBIs, 203 hits and 170 runs scored.

Since joining the Nationals in 2012, Harper won the 2015 MVP award and is a four-time All-Star. In his career, Harper has 701 hits, 370 RBIs and 134 long balls.

Jon Heyman of Fan Rag Sports reported that one rival general manager placed Harper's value on a long-term deal "closer to $500 million than $400 million".

The unnamed general manager claimed that Harper is "twice the player that Giancarlo Stanton is", suggesting that $400 million is the absolute baseline for a Harper deal. Stanton currently holds the biggest contract in Major League history at $325 million. The contract pays Stanton an average of $25 million until 2028 and it has a full no-trade clause. 

According to Sports Illustrated, Harper recently signed a one-year deal with the National for the 2018 season worth $21.65 million, a significant increase from his $13.63 million salary this season.

The contract includes bonuses amounting to $1.3 million, including $100,000 for All-Star Game, Silver Slugger and Gold Glove, $1 million for Most Valuable Player, $500,000 for 2nd, $250,000 for 3rd, $150,000 for 4th and $100,000 for 5th.

If Harper turns free agent after the 2018 season, the New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers and the Philadelphia Phillies are the favorites to sign him. However, Heyman said the Nationals should not be taken out of the race.

The 24-year-old Harper will headline the star-studded free-agent field, which also includes Toronto Blue Jays' Josh Donaldson, Los Angeles Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw and Boston Red Sox's David Price. 

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