Should the Yankees target Nationals superstar outfielder at the deadline?

juan soto, yankees, washington nationals
Jul 8, 2022; Cumberland, Georgia, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Juan Soto (22) singles against the Atlanta Braves during the seventh inning at Truist Park. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

A New York Yankees outfield consisting of Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, and Juan Soto may be one of the best in the history of baseball. With Soto rejecting a $440 million offer from the Washington Nationals, the Yankees could make a significant push to land the generational talent.

If the Bombers are going to give up one of their star prospects, notably Oswald Peraza or Anthony Volpe, they should at least gauge Soto’s value. Unfortunately, he’s going to require much more than just one of those two prospects.

Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported that the Nationals are considering trading Juan Soto after he rejected their offer:

Soto’s rejection of $440 million, however, altered the equation, sources said, leaving club officials believing that if they cannot sign him for that money, they never will. The Nationals view their exploration of a Soto trade as due diligence. He is under club control for the rest of this season and then two more. The team does not need to trade him immediately if it does not get a desired offer.

The reality is that Soto is borderline untradable given the number of prospects he’s going to require in a blockbuster trade. We are talking Peraza, Volpe, Jasson Dominguez, and maybe several others just to get the needle pointing in the right direction.

The Yankees would be getting a bonafide superstar:

This season, Soto is hitting .247 with a 40.5% on base rate and .490 slugging percentage. He’s already hit 19 homers the season with 42 RBIs, hosting a 20.5% walk rate, one of the best in baseball.

He was even more effective in 2021, hitting .313 with a 46.5% on-base rate, 29 homers, and 95 RBIs. Pairing him with an elite Aaron Judge would be unbelievable, providing the Yankees with two of the best sluggers in all of baseball.

The question of whether the Yankees should target Soto at the deadline is an easy one. They should absolutely inquire about what it would cost to land him, but they may not have a deep enough farm system to even get close.

Aside from his incredible talent, Soto is under team control until 2025, meaning the Yankees wouldn’t have to pay him for another three years. Soto will want to be paid immediately, so it would put management in a tough spot with Judge’s extension coming up as well. Overall, the probability is next to zero that the Yankees pull off a legendary trade. Unless they can somehow incoropate Stephen Strasburgh’s contract into the mix to help take pressure off the Nationals, the scenario quickly gets unrealistic.

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