For the neutral fan, it would be extremely exciting to watch the talented Soto join a postseason race and leave the hapless Nationals.
However, not every team is capable of pulling off a deal for him.
Some organizations don’t have great prospects or young, MLB-ready players to offer the Nationals.
Some do, but aren’t close to contention.
Other franchises have the assets, but are extremely unlikely to extend him.
It’s a complex scenario, because he would like to go to a team with clear playoff chances and can offer him an extension, either now or in a few years.
And, of course, the Nationals would like the best possible package in return.
Five Potential Landing Spots For Soto
There are, according to MLB insider Ben Verlander, five teams that meet the criteria.
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) July 26, 2022
He ranks the New York Mets as the most likely team, or best landing spot, for Soto.
The outfielder, who has 20 homers and a.895 OPS this year, would probably love to join the wealthiest team in baseball.
Mets owner Steven Cohen could almost give him a blank check.
The New York Yankees are certainly more careful with finances and expenses under the Hal Steinbrenner tenure than what his father used to do, but they have the assets to go after Soto.
The San Diego Padres can offer the best package of prospects of young players, closely followed by the St. Louis Cardinals.
The Los Angeles Dodgers are also full of resources, but aren’t seen as favorites to land him at this point.
That could certainly change, though.
The Nats could also opt to keep him, but he may be at the peak of his value.
The time to make a trade is now.