MLB trade deadline: San Diego Padres get game-changer in Juan Soto

Jul 31, 2022; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Juan Soto (22) on the field during the fourth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 31, 2022; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Nationals right fielder Juan Soto (22) on the field during the fourth inning against the St. Louis Cardinals at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports /
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The world knew that the Washington Nationals were willing to listen to offers for superstar outfielder Juan Soto, but it was not known if a team would be able to put together a package impressive enough to pull him away before the MLB trade deadline. On Tuesday, the San Diego Padres, however, were able to make the dream of acquiring Soto a reality.

MLB trade news: Juan Soto is now a member of the San Diego Padres

With the news that the San Diego Padres have acquired Soto, the Padres have finished the MLB trade deadline strong, following Monday’s shocking trade that brought All-Star reliever Josh Hader from the Milwaukee Brewers to San Diego.

San Diego enters Tuesday’s MLB action holding one of the three National League Wild Card positions, but 12.0 games behind the Los Angeles Dodgers in the race for the NL West. However, a lineup that features Soto, Manny Machado, and Fernando Tatis Jr. (who is expected to begin a minor league rehab assignment this weekend) will be one to be reckoned with in the postseason.

The 23-year-old Soto was considered the top player to be acquired at this year’s MLB trade deadline (if the Nationals were willing to move him). He is not scheduled to be a free agent until the 2025 campaign and is slashing .246/.408/.485 heading into Tuesday, helping him put together an OPS+ of 158 and bWAR of 3.8.

Soto finished second in National League MVP balloting this season and turned down a massive extension from Washington earlier this season, signaling his time in the nation’s capital was coming to an end. With that in mind, Washington was willing to listen to offers and San Diego was able to meet those demands.

Next. Reviewing the 2021 trade deadline deals and their impacts. dark

We will update this story below with more information as it becomes available.

UPDATE: Reportedly the package coming from Washington also includes slugging switch-hitting first baseman Josh Bell. ESPN’s Jeff Passan with some details.

UPDATE: With Bell in the lineup and Tatis on his way back, the top five in the San Diego batting order could now be Tatis, Jake Cronenworth, Machado, Soto, and Bell.

UPDATE: Luke Voit is heading from San Diego to Washington as part of the deal, per reports.