Washington Nationals take first step to keeping Juan Soto

Sep 29, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Juan Soto (22) in the dugout in the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Sep 29, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Juan Soto (22) in the dugout in the first inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /
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Three years. That is how long the Washington Nationals have to convince Juan Soto to remain with the organization. While it is no secret that they would like to sign Soto to a long term extension, he has made it clear that he will not consider such an offer unless the Nationals prove that they want to win.

Despite that edict, the Nationals may have taken the first step towards locking in their superstar outfielder. They stole his brother, Elian Soto, from the Mets as he is reportedly set to join his brother’s organization.

Washington Nationals signing could keep Juan Soto in town

Interestingly, this reversal came due to Elian’s brother. Juan had convinced him to forgo his verbal commitment to the Mets and to join him in Washington instead. Even though he cannot sign until 2023, it is difficult to imagine that he will change his mind about joining the Nationals.

Turning trash into treasure. light. More Nationals

It is telling that the elder Soto was a driving force behind this decision. If he sold his brother on the idea of playing together on the same team, that will take a lot longer than the two years he would have left of team control. It would be difficult to have that as the selling point and then depart via free agency.

This signing could have long term ramifications. If the Nationals are able to bring in another top free agent or two and show signs of leaving the NL East basement, they could have the ultimate trump card when it comes to retaining the young star.

Obviously, there is more to the decision than getting his brother to head to Washington. The Nationals will need to open the vaults as well. But they have been willing to spend on the right players if they feel it will keep the core intact. Soto is the sort of player that ownership would be willing to write the check for.

Next. Josh Bell - the quiet trade candidate. dark

The Washington Nationals may have added someone that will keep Juan Soto in town. It may be tough to walk away from his younger brother.