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#pounditThursday, October 1, 2020

Anthony Rizzo mocks media over Bryce Harper, Manny Machado reports

Anthony Rizzo

Depending on who you ask, both Bryce Harper and Manny Machado may have been on the verge of signing massive free agent contracts weeks ago. Yet, the two sluggers remain unsigned, and Chicago Cubs superstar Anthony Rizzo is as baffled as anyone about all the inaccurate reporting.

While speaking with reporters on Monday, Rizzo said he is shocked by how many false reports he has heard about Harper and Machado. But if both players want to end their free agency now, Rizzo says he has made them an outstanding offer on behalf of the Cubs.

“So this is what happened. I offered him half of my 12 (million) that I’m making this year,” Rizzo said, per Paul Sullivan of The Chicago Tribune. “But he turned it down. Put that report out.”

Rizzo was initially referring to Harper, but he said the offer applies to both him and Machado.

“Both. Three (million each),” he said. “I split it in half.”

While the thought of playing with Rizzo and a talented young roster like the one in Chicago might appeal to Harper and Machado, that dollar amount seems a bit low. Harper is expected to sign for more than $300 million, and Machado has reportedly received a massive offer from at least one team.

So why all the false reports? In all likelihood, many of those are being planted by the agents representing the players. That’s part of the free agent strategy, and Harper’s agent Scott Boras is a master of manipulation. Rizzo should direct some of his comments toward him.

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