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What to expect from Harper, Boras, Phillies at Vegas Winter Meetings

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The baseball off-season’s at once slower and busier than ever.

Slower, because the off-season activity inevitably lasts long after the Winter Meetings with many prominent players remaining unsigned until January or February.

And busier because players and front offices alike use the off-season to prepare for the grind that awaits. Many players take just a week or two off before starting their training regimens anew. Coaches scatter across the U.S. and beyond, helping those players train. As for front office staff, they’re constantly planning deals even when they aren’t making them. Plus, it’s their chance to develop new ideas or approaches while removed from the rigors of the 162-game season. Even when the games stop, everything else continues behind the scenes.

For at least five days every winter that off-field action enters the spotlight. Considering the setting (Las Vegas) and the stakes (Bryce Harper, Manny Machado), this year’s Winter Meetings have the potential to be particularly memorable.

Starting Sunday night we’ll find out whether baseball’s marquee winter event lives up to that potential. Either way, we should have answers to some of these questions by this time next week…

Harper. Machado. Vegas. Baseball people have been looking forward to this combination for years.

But even as the Winter Meetings arrive........

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