What had long expected to be a robust market for Manny Machado, free agency has instead moved at a crawl for the talented shortstop. The same applies to Bryce Harper, which put a dent in beliefs they would each sign contracts near $400 million.
Both players stand as the best available at their respective positions and two of the best talents the game has to offer. The Los Angeles Dodgers have been connected to Harper but are believed to be unlikely to re-sign Machado.
Meanwhile, the Chicago White Sox, New York Yankees and Philadelphia Phillies are among the clubs that have been linked to both players.
According to Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports, the White Sox took their interest a step further by presenting Machado with a contract offer:
The Chicago #WhiteSox are more engaged with Manny Machado than Bryce Harper at the moment, and have officially made an offer to Machado. They have yet to make a formal offer to Harper, but have been in constant contact.
— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) January 3, 2019
While the terms of a purported deal are unknown, it was previously reported the White Sox were unwilling to offer Machado more than seven years. The White Sox are one of the teams Machado visited on his free agency tour.
Interest in the 26-year-old may be curtailed because of his remarks about hustling and inconsistent showing in the postseason. Machado recently admitted the comments were inappropriate and he assured focus or effort would not be an issue for him.