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Why the Phillies won’t get Bryce Harper

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On Episode 115 of “The Felske Files,” hosts John Stolnis and Justin Klugh discuss the chances of the Nationals, not the Phillies or Yankees, being the team that signs Bryce Harper in free agency. Also, McClure calls out Rupp, Odubel Herrera is benched, and a trio of hot Phils hitters.

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MLB: Game 1-Philadelphia Phillies at Washington Nationals Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

Much of the speculation, both in the industry and among Phillies fans, is that Washington Nationals slugger Bryce Harper will sign with the Phils or the New York Yankees when he becomes a free agent after the 2018 season.

It makes a lot of sense. One would assume Harper would want to sign the biggest free agent deal anyone has signed in the history of baseball, and the two teams most likely to afford it and have the willingness to do so are the Phillies and Yankees.

But on this week’s podcast, this question is proposed: What if he really likes playing in Washington, DC? What if he really enjoys playing with his teammates, many of whom will still be there in 2019 and beyond? And why wouldn’t the Nats make a major push to keep him, seeing as how they are a deep-pocketed team with close ties to Scott Boras?

That issue was among a number of issues discussed by hosts John Stolnis and Justin Klugh on Episode 115 of The Felske Files (starts at the 29:33 mark).

Also on this week’s show:

  • The Phillies wrap up their fourth series (12 games) against the Nats so far this year.
  • Good riddance to the Nats.
  • Phillies went 5-7 against the Nationals but hold a +6 run differential (thanks Jeremy Guthrie!)
  • A trio of young Phils starters are having an insanely hot month of May.
  • Pitching coach Bob McClure calls out Cameron Rupp for his game-calling.
  • McClure has come under criticism by some this year as his pitching staff has underperformed.
  • Was McClure calling out Rupp to try and bolster his public image?
  • Some tough love may be needed for players like Rupp and Odubel Herrera.
  • Phillies manager benches Herrera for unspecified reasons.
  • This isn’t the first time Herrera has been benched for a lack of focus.
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