At this point, it appears Juan Soto will be sticking around in the National League even if he’s traded by the Nationals.
Washington has until Tuesday to make an in-season trade centering around Soto, who reportedly rejected a significant contract extension offer from the organization a few weeks ago. A bevy of teams have been attached to Soto in rumors since the start of the month, but as the trade deadline nears, the scope of suitors is coming into focus.
The New York Post’s Jon Heyman on Saturday identified the four teams most likely to land Soto: the San Diego Padres, Los Angeles Dodgers, Texas Rangers and St. Louis Cardinals. On Sunday, fellow Major League Baseball insider Jim Bowden provided an updated list with one less ballclub.
“The #Nationals now have only 3 teams left in the bidding for a Juan Soto trade according to club sources, Bowden tweeted. “The teams are believed to be #Padres #Cardinals and #Dodgers with the #Cardinals offering the most talent off their major league club and the Padres the most talent from Farm.”
Of course, putting together an appealing enough trade package for the Nationals only would be Step 1 for any of those teams. An equally demanding next task will be paying Soto, who is under team control for two more seasons.