The outfielder, already a World Series champion in 2019, has become a true star, and is only 23 years old.
He has been a legitimate MVP candidate ever since his rookie season in 2018, and has been extremely consistent year in and year out.
That consistency, and his overall excellence as a ballplayer, has prompted the Nationals to seek a long-term extension with him.
They clearly want him to stay in the nation’s capital city, and may have gotten rid of expensive players in the past (Anthony Rendon, Max Scherzer, and Trea Turner are prime examples) to make sure they have the money to throw at their young star.
And boy, is he becoming expensive.
According to ESPN reporters Enrique Rojas and Jeff Passan, Soto rejected a 13-year, $350M contract from the Nats.
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) February 16, 2022
It happened before the lockout started, as teams are not allowed to negotiate with players during the halt.
He Is Too Good To Settle For Less Than $400 Million
The problem is that Soto is too young and too good to settle for a $350 million deal.
That contract would pay him a $26.92 million salary per year, which is actually not too shabby.
But he is already an elite performer and hasn’t peaked yet, being so young.
It’s not surprising that he rejected the offer, as he may be shooting for something closer to $500 million.
He may or may not get there, but one thing is certain: he will surpass $400 million.
After all, at 23, he already has a .301/.432/.550 line, 98 home runs, an All-Star berth (2021), a World Series championship (2019), two All-MLB First Team finishes (2020, 2021), two Silver Slugger Awards (2020, 2021), and a batting crown in 2020.
Analysts say he should have won the MVP award last year.
He may very well push close to $500 million.