Eric Hosmer had no interest in relocating from San Diego to Washington, D.C.
Hosmer reportedly was included in the initial framework of the blockbuster Nationals-Padres trade that sent Juan Soto to the Pacific Coast. However, the deal couldn’t be finalized until it was green-lit by Hosmer, who had a no-trade clause in his contract.
The veteran first baseman decided not to approve a trade to the Nationals, despite San Diego’s best efforts. In a column published Tuesday, ESPN MLB insider Jeff Passan shed light on how the Padres tried to convince Hosmer to OK the move.
“The inclusion of Hosmer was a gambit by the Padres to lower their luxury-tax payroll number,” Passan wrote. “Washington had agreed to take on $8 million of the $44 million remaining on the final 3 1/2 years of his contract. Hosmer, however, didn’t want to go to Washington amid its reboot and made that clear when he said he would invoke his no-trade privileges and block a deal, even if the Padres were willing to include a trade kicker and financially incentivize him to accept the move. Early in the morning, he made it clear: He was rejecting the trade.”
The decision paid off for Hosmer, who ultimately was traded to the Boston Red Sox before the deadline. The four-time Gold Glove winner joined a team that still is in the American League wild card race and needed his services at first base. Hosmer also has a real shot at being Boston’s Opening Day first baseman next season.
As for the Nationals, it’s probably going to be quite a while before they’re contending for a playoff spot again.