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OC Register: Bryce Harper’s comments about Mike Trout prompt tampering question from MLB

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TEMPE, Ariz. >> Major League Baseball officials have reached out to the Angels and Philadelphia Phillies regarding possible tampering by Bryce Harper in his comments about Mike Trout, a league spokesman said Wednesday.

In his introductory press conference with the Phillies on Saturday, Harper had alluded to Trout potentially joining the Phillies after his contract expires in 2020. In a radio interview on Tuesday, Harper was more specific.

“If you don’t think I’m going to call Mike Trout to come to Philly in 2020, you’re crazy,” Harper told SportsRadio 94WIP.

Harper and the Phillies could be fined if MLB determines his comments constituted tampering.

On Wednesday, Trout shrugged off the comments.

“Obviously I saw it,” Trout said. “He’s excited. He’s excited about his team. I have no control over what he says.”

There has been rampant speculation for years that Trout would wind up with the Phillies, who play less than an hour from his New Jersey hometown, after the end of his contract with the Angels.

The completion of Harper’s 13-year, $330-million deal with the Phillies last week only increased that talk. Harper’s average annual salary leaves room for Trout, and Harper has been recruiting him publicly.

“There is a rule against tampering for a reason,” Angels manager Brad Ausmus said Wednesday. “There has been for a long time. I don’t know if it’s a bigger deal or not (now). It’s reported more because of social media, but I don’t know that it’s any bigger of a deal. It’s always been a big deal.”

Elsewhere in the Angels clubhouse, Harper’s comments were greeted with a shrug of the shoulders.

“Everybody can say whatever they want,” said Tyler Skaggs. “I know it could be considered tampering. I’m a Laker fan, so I know all about tampering. Ultimately it’s Mike Trout’s decision. Everybody can say what they want. I don’t think any one person is going to sway Mike. It’s all up to him, what he personally wants to do.”

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In my opinion, all this is doing is increasing our chances to extend Trout.


You have to believe Trout’s getting tired of all this. I whole heartily believe he is. I bet even his family is getting worried about it distracting him from playing the game. I doubt his family likes all this hounding Trout is getting.


Im confident more then ever we’re extending Trout.

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he's going to get asked the same questions at each city they play. if he's not tired of all of it yet, he soon will be. i can't imagine him going through two full seasons of "so mike, are you planning on testing the free agent market?" again and again and again and . . .

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