Nationals GM in constant talks with Harper: 'We want him here'


Bryce Harper is expected to sign one of the richest contracts in baseball history this offseason, and although it may take a king's ransom to keep him in Washington, the Nationals will try to re-sign their star.

Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said that while contract talks are "up in the air," there's constant communication between his club and Harper's representatives.

"We like Bryce. We like him here. We want him here," Rizzo told 106.7 The Fan on Wednesday. "I think he likes it here. I think he would like to be here. But it's got to work for both parties. So Bryce has to be comfortable here, and we have to be comfortable that it fits in with our model of what we're trying to do long term and the ability to put players around him. A lot of things go into it.

"Like I said before, it's a complicated negotiation and discussion and planning stages and that type of thing. We love Harp. I love him personally and professionally and of course we'd love to see him here long term."

During a recent appearance on MLB Network, Harper talked about how bright the future looks in Washington with youngsters like Juan Soto and Victor Robles in the lineup, but he wouldn't dive too heavily into what his plans are after the 2018 season.

"It's going to be an exciting future for the Nationals, and we'll see if I'm in those plans," he said.

The 25-year-old is a free agent at season's end. He's represented by Scott Boras, who has a reputation for getting his clients lucrative, long-term deals.

A $400-million contract for Harper was rumored as a possibility more than a year ago.

The six-time All-Star and winner of the 2015 National League MVP is hitting .247/.388/.503 this season with 33 home runs and 94 RBIs in 144 games.

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