It's been speculated for a while that the Phillies would land either Manny Machado or Bryce Harper this offseason in free agency, but could they actually land both?
MLB executives told Jon Heyman of FanCred that they feel "it's quite possible" that the Phillies will scoop up both superstars -- the cream of this year's free agent class and two of the biggest prizes in free agent history.
"Of the more than 10 executives contacted this week, though the question was about who'd get the bigger deal between outfielder Bryce Harper and infielder Manny Machado, a few volunteered that they believed Philly could sign both players," Heyman wrote, noting that the Phillies' revenue from their TV deal, their relatively low payroll, and their understanding that they need to catch up to the Braves are among the reasons why the Machado/Harper swoop-in could happen.
Machado, 26, is hitting .302/.374/.545 with 34 homers in 146 games this season split between the Orioles and Dodgers -- who traded for him in July.
Harper, 25, is hitting .247/.388/.503 with 33 homers in 144 games this season for the Nationals, who briefly made him available via trade before the July 31 deadline.
Both stars are expected to get contracts well in excess of $200 million this offseason.