It’s no secret that the Washington Nationals are looking to trade All-Star outfielder Juan Soto ahead of Major League Baseball‘s trade deadline on Aug. 2 after the superstar declined a 15-year, $440 million offer with the team earlier this month, but it sounds like they’re not going to take anything less than their massive asking price.
MLB reporter Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports reported on Saturday that the Nationals are seeking several top young players in return for Soto and that Washington is not budging for teams that can’t meet those trade demands.
“My understanding right now, from multiple clubs, is that the nationals are asking for four or five top players – a combination of prospects and major leaguers with low service time,” Rosenthal said. “That’s a monstrous ask, but it’s Juan Soto.”
What's the Nationals asking price for Juan Soto? @Ken_Rosenthal reports that it will take 4 to 5 top young players (combo of prospects and major leaguers with low service time) to potentially land the superstar pic.twitter.com/fefj20gO7P
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) July 23, 2022
“Teams are not offended by what the Nationals want, but they’re worried that they can’t meet that price,” Rosenthal said. “At this point, it’s not really a negotiation. The nationals are saying ‘either you express a willingness to meet our price or we just to the next club.”
While the Nationals are trying to trade their young star before this year’s trade deadline, they also aren’t desperate as they have the All-Star under control for another year and a half before the end of his contract.
While there is plenty of interest in the star outfielder across the league, ESPN’s Buster Olney reported last week that the San Diego Padres and the Toronto Blue Jays were the two teams most likely contenders to trade for Soto.
“The expectation of rival executives is the Nationals are going to trade Soto,” Olney said on Thursday’s edition of ESPN’s Get Up. “The two most, I think, invested teams in this chase might turn out to be the San Diego Padres, who are a win-now team. How much fun would (Fernando) Tatís (Jr.) and Soto and (Manny) Machado be in their lineup? And the Toronto Blue Jays, who desperately need a left-handed hitter in the middle of that very right-handed lineup.”
Wherever Soto does end up and whenever it happens, it will undoubtedly be one of the biggest trades in recent MLB history.