With Juan Soto declining the contract extension, the Washington Nationals may be forced to trade their outfielder to one of several teams interested in acquiring Soto. However, it was reported that the Nationals were not going to have a cheap trade with this Soto. Check out the top sportsbook sites for betting on baseball.
This whole situation started when Soto put down a 15-year extension contract, worth $440 million, with the Nats. The contract was actually bigger than Mike Trout’s 12-year, $426 million contract, even though the average annual value of $29,3 million was lower than most players at Soto’s level. Soto is currently under team control through 2024 and is making $17,1 million this season.
According to The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal, the Nats were asking for “four to five youngsters” from prospects or big leaguers with several years of team control left in exchange for Soto.
Knowing Soto’s impressive record at such a young age, it wasn’t a surprise that the Nats were asking for a high price for the trade.
Soto won the Home Run Derby on Monday and defeated rookie Julio Rodriguez in the final. In 2021, he was also recorded as the MVP runner-up after slashing .313/.465/.534 with 29 homers.
Moreover, the team also signaled a non-negotiable price, so if a team is unable to meet the demand, the Nats will most likely choose to move on with another team. Though the Nationals might look “too demanding” with this, Rosenthal reported that the teams were not “offended” by the Nats’ demand price for the two-time All-Star.
With such high requirements, several teams have engaged in trade talks with the Nationals, such as the New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers, San Diego Padres, St. Louis Cardinals, New York Mets, Seattle Mariners, and San Fransisco Giants, as Bob Nightengale of USAToday reported.
In addition, the Nats were also letting the teams know that in order to acquire Soto in team control by the end of the 2024 season, they needed to meet the demand by the deadline, which was scheduled for August 2.
Until now, it is uncertain which team is willing to meet the Nats’ demand for Soto’s trade.
Despite the fact that Soto was rejecting the extension deal, Soto said that he “felt bad” about the whole trade drama situation. Soto was trying to keep the information private, but it went out of his control eventually.
“At the end of the day we just got to keep playing,” Soto said.
Soto also expressed dismay about the Nats’ changing the courses in order to make him available in trade talks. In fact, the Nats said that they would never trade him, according to Soto.
“A couple weeks ago, they said they would never trade me. And then all these things came out,” Soto said. “It feels really uncomfortable. You don’t know what to trust.”
Though Soto doesn’t have any preferred trade destination, he said that he would make a quick adjustment on whichever team he will end up with. “I’m just here to play baseball and play as hard as I can,” Soto said.
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