Nationals Bryce Harper, Available, MLB Trade Deadline, Phillies

In return for Harper, the Nationals would ask for multiple pitchers, a very high asking price for a player in Harper who would likely be a rental. He saw the benefits in getting an arbitration deal done with Harper two years ahead of this tense free agent season.

According to Jon Morosi of MLB.com, the Nationals and Indians have discussed a potential trade centering around Bryce Harper, but there is little momentum in talks and a trade appears unlikely.

Ken Rosenthal of Fox reports the Nationals have been "sending out feelers" on Harper to gauge possible interest from other teams.

Harper, 25, has become one of the biggest names in baseball since the Nationals picked him first overall in the 2010 draft.

But Rizzo apparently ended that chatter Tuesday morning, telling the Post that "I believe in this team". Harper will be owed $7 million for the rest of this season, which could put teams like the Dodgers and the Yankees over the $197 million luxury-tax threshold. He also told ESPN's Buster Olney that Harper will not be dealt. He's a career.277 hitter with six all-star appearances in seven seasons. If any team wants to push all-in with its chips to chase a World Series title this year, at least they now know for sure who to call. The Nationals, meanwhile, are lingering in playoff contention - they're 5 1/2 games back in the wild-card race.

  • Stacy Allen