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Storylines: Bryce Harper will return to Nationals next season, while Washington avoids arbitration

Even with rumors that Bryce Harper will be bolting from Washington when he's a free agent, he agreed to terms with the Nationals for one more season, avoiding arbitration. This and other storylines from around baseball...

Top Storylines

  • Star outfielder Bryce Harper is guaranteed to stay with the Washington Nationals for another season.  Both sides have agreed to a $21.625M contract to cover the final year of arbitration in Harper’s contract in 2018 per Jon Heyman of FanRag.  There has been rampant speculation throughout the baseball industry that Harper is as sure as gone once his contract runs out and he will seek big bucks somewhere else as many believe the Nats will not be able to pony up the cash he wants.  While his time in Washington may in fact be limited, he will not be leaving Washington until he officially becomes a free agent after the 2018 season.  Harper burst onto the scene with the Nationals back in 2012 and immediately became recognized as a top talent in the game despite being just 19 years old.  For the most part he has done nothing but dazzle with his baseball abilities and become a superstar of the game.  The Nationals are in a strong spot to begin the 2017 season and Harper is doing what he does best by destroying the cover of the baseball at the plate.  It is not going to be known what Harper’s fate will be after 2018 but it’s a problem the Nationals will not have to worry about for another guaranteed season.

Other Storylines

  • The Chicago Cubs have promoted top infield/outfield prospect Ian Happ per Mark Gonzales of the Chicago Tribune.  Happ is yet another top homegrown talent that the Cubs are plunging from their farm system to help come up and make an immediate impact with key players such as Kris Bryant, Jon Jay and Addison Russel dealing with various ailments.

  • The Tampa Bay Rays are sending southpaw Blake Snell back to Triple-A Durham per Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times. Snell is being demoted after another disappointing outing where he failed to go at least six innings in Saturday’s game against the Boston Red Sox.  He has not been able to command his strikeout pitch and is suffering from poor control and command of his pitches, leading to his struggles in the season.  The Rays are hoping some fine-tuning the in the minors can set him right.

  • Miami Marlins lefty Wei-Yin Chen may not be picking up a baseball again for the rest of the season.  The southpaw is out again indefinitely due having a tired arm and suffering a setback in his latest bullpen session per Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald.  It is not known how bad it is but the Marlins are not counting on him to take the mound for an extended period of time.

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