Bryce Harper meets with the Los Angeles Dodgers and the very next day, a Brinks truck is parked right outside the team’s spring training complex.
Coincidence or correlation?
With the first full week of exhibition games on deck, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts confirmed he joined club executives in meeting with Harper in Las Vegas on Sunday night.
Roberts said it was a good session and gave the sides a chance to “get to know each other.” Roberts says the Dodgers were “vetting a certain process.”
Harper has been connected to the Philadelphia Phillies and the San Francisco Giants during a second consecutive slow free-agent market for the sport. Manny Machado, the other top free agent this winter, signed a $300 million, 10-year deal with the San Diego Padres on Thursday.
The 26-year-old Harper was the 2015 NL MVP and made six All-Star teams in seven big league seasons with the Washington Nationals. He batted .249 with 34 home runs, 100 RBIs and an .889 OPS last season.
FROM AROUND THE GRAPEFRUIT AND CACTUS LEAGUES
BRAVES 9, NATIONALS 4
Patrick Corbin, who signed a $140 million, six-year contract, made the 2½-hour bus ride to start for Washington. He allowed one hit in two innings, struck out two and walked none.
Freddie Freeman hit a two-run homer. Catcher Alex Jackson, the sixth overall pick by Seattle in 2014, doubled and drove in two runs for Atlanta.
Juan Soto doubled and drove in two runs for the Nats.
METS 3, ASTROS 3, 9 INNINGS
Justin Verlander pitched two perfect innings, striking out one and getting five flyball outs. Reaching 96 mph, Verlander threw 20 of 25 pitches for strikes, concentrating on his changeup and pitching inside to right-handed batters.
New York’s Noah Syndergaard opened with three consecutive 98 mph fastballs and allowed first-inning hits to George Springer and Josh Reddick. Syndergaard struck out the final two hitters of his two-inning outing, including Robinson Chirinos on a 99 mph fastball.
David Thompson hit a three-run homer off Houston’s Kent Emanuel.
YANKEES 3, BLUE JAYS 0
James Paxton made his Yankees debut, working two innings and combining with five relievers on a one-hitter. Troy Tulowitzki went deep in his first at-bat as a Yankee, homering off former Toronto teammates Marcus Stroman. Aaron Judge doubled in his spring training debut.
Stroman gave up two homers in his spring debut for Toronto. Teoscar Hernandez, considered a project for new manager Charlie Montoyo, collected the lone hit, then promptly stole second.
TWINS 7, ORIOLES 1
Mike Yastrzemski, a 28-year-old grandson of Hall of Famer Carl Yastrzemski who has played six seasons in the minor leagues, entered in the sixth inning for the Orioles. He played center field and flied out in his only at-bat.
Byron Buxton singled, doubled and homered to drive in five runs for Minnesota.
Eric Young Jr. homered for Baltimore.
TIGERS (SS) 3, CARDINALS 3, 9 INNINGS
Miguel Cabrera singled and drove in a run for the Tigers. Daz Cameron, a 22-year-old son of former major league center fielder Mike Cameron, started in center field and went 1 for 2 with a double.
Jose Martinez, the son of Carlos Martinez, walked and singled for St. Louis.
PHILLIES 12, TIGERS (SS) 7
Jean Segura, acquired in a December trade with Seattle, had two hits and scored twice. Philadelphia newcomers Andrew McCutcheon and J.T. Realmuto each singled and scored a run. James Pazos, obtained along with Segura trade, won in relief.
Jordan Zimmermann struck out four in two innings the Tigers. Christin Stewart, selected 34th overall by in the 2015 amateur draft, homered.
MARLINS 5, RAYS 0
Jon Berti, a non-roster invitee, tripled for Miami. Austin Dean had two hits and two RBIs.
Brandon Lowe and Joe McCarthy each had two hits for Tampa Bay.
PIRATES 4, RED SOX 3
Pittsburgh starter Jordan Lyles pitched two innings, giving up a solo home run to Bryce Brentz. Melky Cabrera doubled for Pittsburgh.