Bryce Harper says that he would have liked to stay in Washington, D.C. for his whole career, but things "just didn't work out."
Harper spent his first seven seasons with the Nationals before signing a 13-year, $330 million deal with the Philadelphia Phillies.
"For me, it was time to move on," Harper told SI.com. "Would I have loved to stay in D.C. my whole career? Absolutely. But it just didn't work out, and I'm where I'm at and where I want to be with a great group of guys. I look forward to going into D.C. in the next few days and enjoying those times as well."
Harper also says he did not count any team out during the free agency process and was reporteldy courted by the San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants among other teams.
"So going into the offseason, our minds and ears were open from the beginning, and it was a good offseason, to be able to hear from teams and be wanted by teams. We believe we've made the best decision for our family and long-term, and we're very excited to be where we're at," Harper said.
The 26-year-old Harper hit .249 last season, with an on-base percentage of .393 and a slugging percentage of .496.
He also hit 34 home runs and drove in 100 runs for Washington, who finished 82–80 and missed the playoffs.