Juan Soto was mentioned as a trade candidate, but here’s why the St. Louis Cardinals will not trade for the young phenom outfielder.
The trade rumors surrounding Juan Soto made little sense to begin with. Why would the Washington Nationals be motivated to move their young superstar, a generational player who is signed until 2025?
If Soto was available, the St. Louis Cardinals and the other 28 teams in baseball need to be all over it. There’s only one problem: he’s not available. As I discussed on The Baseball Insiders Podcast, which was later backed up by Soto’s agent, Scott Boras, he won’t be traded. “Forget Soto trade … not happening,” Boras told Jon Heyman of The New York Post.
It would be incredibly difficult to acquire Soto, considering the price may be four high-end prospects and more. Combine that with the fact that his future contract extension is likely to be worth in the $500 million range and that significantly limits the teams that can actually afford him. Still, it’s worth the call to inquire on Soto, who would cost the Cardinals perhaps as much as Nolan Gorman, Matthew Liberatore and Jordan Walker. No, that is not a typo. It could cost at least two of them, if not all three.
But it’s something that Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak doesn’t have to sweat, considering he won’t be able to trade for Soto since he’s not available. Even if he was, it’s hard to envision Mozeliak even considering the possibility since he values prospects so much, and trading at least two of the names above would sap their farm system of high-end talent.
Still, it’s possible that Soto becomes available at *some* point before he becomes a free agent. While he has had a down year statistically, hitting .250/.393/.471 with eight home runs and 11 RBI, his career numbers – .297/.429/.543 with 106 home runs and 323 RBI and 405(!) walks – place him in elite company.
It’s fun to imagine that in St. Louis or in any other lineup, of course, but he’ll be in Washington for the foreseeable future. The Soto to the Cardinals dream is nothing more than that, and can be forgotten about.