Padres reach trade for Soto, Bell (source)

August 2nd, 2022

He's only 23 years old, has a power/plate-discipline combination that draws comparisons to Ted Williams, and he recently turned down a 15-year, $440 million contract extension offer from the Nationals. Juan Soto is now a potential trade candidate as today's Trade Deadline approaches, and he has two years remaining after this season before he is eligible for free agency. We're keeping track of all the latest Soto rumors here.

Aug. 2: Padres agree to deal for Soto, Bell
The Padres have agreed to a trade with the Nationals for Soto and Josh Bell, a source told's Jon Paul Morosi. More >

Aug. 2: Could Soto and Bell be on the move to Padres?
Time is running out for the Nationals to trade Juan Soto prior to today's 6 p.m. ET Trade Deadline. However,'s Jon Paul Morosi said this morning that he is "very confident" the Nationals will deal Soto prior to the Deadline.

As to where the superstar outfielder will go, the Padres appear to be the frontrunner for his services, and they may be getting more than just Soto. The Padres are working on a package that would include Soto and Nationals first baseman Josh Bell, according to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman. There is "momentum" in the Bell-to-San Diego trade talks, per The Washington Post's Barry Svrluga. He adds that "there is a growing sense that the Padres are the most likely landing spot for Juan Soto."

Aug. 1: Cardinals unwilling to part with Carlson, top prospects
Talks between the Nationals and Cardinals have reportedly stalled over Washington's high asking price, according to's Jon Paul Morosi.

While St. Louis has not cut off negotiations, the club, which has been considered a frontrunner for Soto because of its abundance of young talent, appears unlikely to include Major League outfielder Dylan Carlson in a deal also involving multiple top prospects.

Aug. 1: Are Padres still in on Soto after Hader blockbuster?
The Padres landed All-Star closer Josh Hader from the Brewers on Monday (per a source), giving up a substantial package to get the deal done. However, the club still has the prospects to land another big fish such as Soto, as ESPN’s Jeff Passan points out.’s Jon Paul Morosi reported Saturday that the Padres have been willing to discuss C.J. Abrams, Adrian Morejon and No. 1 prospect Robert Hassell III as part of a potential return for Soto. All three remain with the organization, as does MacKenzie Gore, No. 3 prospect Robert Wood and No. 4 prospect Jackson Merrill.

Aug. 1: Is the Soto race tilting toward this NL powerhouse?
Last summer, the Padres appeared to be on the verge of acquiring Max Scherzer from the Nationals, but the Dodgers swooped in at the 11th hour and acquired both Scherzer and Trea Turner. The same thing could happen again with Soto this year, as The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal (subscription required) writes that Los Angeles has “been in contact with the Nationals” about the star outfielder.

The Dodgers have seemingly been on the periphery of trade talks for Soto over the past couple of weeks, with many considering the Padres and Cardinals to be the favorites. But USA Today’s Bob Nightengale hears that the Dodgers have been “much more aggressive” in their proposals for Soto than San Diego or St. Louis of late.

Meanwhile, the Padres are exploring a number of other trade scenarios for blue-chip targets, including the Cubs' Willson Contreras and Ian Happ, per Rosenthal.

It's possible the Nats are using the Dodgers' involvement in trade discussions to try to extract more value from the Padres, knowing general manager A.J. Preller won't want to lose a big fish to L.A. for the second straight year.

On July 31,'s Jon Paul Morosi reported the Padres were willing to discuss including three of their best young players as part of a deal for Soto. In his column, Rosenthal writes the Dodgers would need "a more significant package" of prospects to get Soto compared to Turner and Scherzer. Last year, Los Angeles gave up C Keibert Ruiz (LA's No. 1 prospect at the time), RHP Josiah Gray (No. 2), RHP Gerardo Carrillo (No. 17) and OF Donovan Casey to get Turner and Scherzer.

If you're looking for a possible sleeper team in the Soto race, Morosi is keeping the Giants in mind.

After recording an MLB-best 107 wins last season, San Francisco entered Monday with a .500 record (51-51), including a 3-8 mark since the All-Star break. As a result, the club is reportedly willing to listen to offers for a number of veterans who can test free agency after 2022, including Carlos Rodón (opt-out), Joc Pederson, Brandon Belt and Wilmer Flores, but the team is still looking to improve its chances of contending in 2023 and beyond. One possibility is trading some of these veterans for prospects to sweeten a potential Soto offer, Morosi notes.

"Do not sleep on the Giants," Morosi said Monday on MLB Network. "Farhan Zaidi is one of the more creative executives in the game. I do think they have a seat at the table, even though a lot of us believe Padres, Cardinals, Dodgers to some extent still have the lead focus right now."

July 31: Padres willing to offer top young talent for Soto (sources)
The Padres are willing to discuss including three of their best young players as part of a deal for Juan Soto, sources told's Jon Paul Morosi. Those players are the team's current top prospect, Robert Hassell III, its No. 1 prospect at the beginning of this season, shortstop C.J. Abrams, and highly touted left-handed pitcher Adrian Morejon.

Hassell, the No. 22 prospect in baseball according to MLB Pipeline, has an .847 OPS with 28 extra-base hits and 20 steals at High-A Fort Wayne this year. Abrams made his MLB debut on April 8 this season and has hit .231 across 121 at-bats entering Saturday.

Morejon was a Top 50 prospect entering the 2019 season. The 23-year-old missed most of last season following Tommy John surgery and has posted a 3.00 ERA in six appearances in the Majors this year.

According to The Athletic's Jim Bowden, the Padres are one of three teams left in the bidding for Soto, along with the Cardinals and Dodgers. Bowden hears San Diego is offering the most talent from its farm system, while St. Louis' offer is heavier on talent from its MLB roster.

The Mariners were also said to be in the mix recently, but it was assumed that they were out after sending four players to the Reds in a blockbuster deal for right-hander Luis Castillo, and general manager Jerry Dipoto all but confirmed that Seattle is no longer pursuing Soto on Sunday.

"I can say we checked in, it would've been negligence if we didn't, but I don't think that's going very far for us," Dipoto said in an appearance on MLB Network Radio on SiriusXM when asked if the team was in on Soto or Shohei Ohtani.

July 30: “Difficult to bet against San Diego” in pursuit of Soto (report)
While the Cardinals and Dodgers could be in on Juan Soto, it’ll be difficult to “bet against” the Padres, writes The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal (subscription required).

San Diego’s advantage in talks could be due in part to the Mariners’ trade for Luis Castillo, as Padres GM A.J. Preller operates in the same fearless manner as Seattle’s Jerry Dipoto, and in turn would be willing to give up more in return. While the Padres aren’t in the midst of a 20-year playoff drought like the Mariners, San Diego hasn’t made the playoffs in a full season since Preller’s hiring in 2014.

Preller appears to be taking that full bore approach into his pursuit of Soto, with one executive telling Rosenthal there's “no way (Preller) gives up on Soto. He’s the only one who will keep giving more and more."

Another reason San Diego holds the advantage is due to the Cardinals being stuck in an “uncomfortable situation,” as the Athletics want some of the same prospects for starter Frankie Montas that the Nationals want for Soto, writes Rosenthal.

While the Cardinals have a Montas-sized hole in their rotation due to injuries to starters Jack Flaherty and Steven Matz, there’s still a case for the Cardinals to be all in on Soto, as he’d be the perfect complement to Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado while also giving St. Louis some extra firepower for Albert Pujols and Yadier Molina’s final season.

That being said, Soto being traded isn’t a sure thing, writes Rosenthal, as National GM Mike Rizzo could hold onto Soto through the Trade Deadline and revisit trade talks in the offseason when the sale of the Nationals could be closer to resolution.

Even if they stop their pursuit of Soto, the Cardinals could also end up priced out of Montas, as Rosenthal writes the acquisition cost for Montas is in the range of Castillo’s, which could end up being too much for Cardinals GM John Mozeliak. If Montas does end up becoming unobtainable, the Cardinals could end up testing the rental market by going after starters Noah Syndergaard, José Quintana, Nathan Eovaldi or Carlos Rodón.

July 30: How will Castillo trade impact Soto's market?
One of the biggest dominoes of this year's Trade Deadline has fallen. In a blockbuster deal, the Mariners acquired Reds right-hander Luis Castillo for four prospects. Shortstops Noelvi Marte and Edwin Arroyo, the Mariners' Nos. 1 and 3 prospects, per MLB Pipeline, are part of the return package, along with right-hander Levi Stoudt, the No. 5 Mariners prospect, and unranked pitcher Andrew Moore.

Before Friday's trade, Seattle was seen as one of the four frontrunners for the Nationals superstar outfielder, according to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman. Now, after trading away three of their top five prospects, the Mariners may have taken themselves out of the bidding for Soto. The Nationals are currently asking for five or six top prospects in exchange for the superstar, ESPN's Jeff Passan reported -- an asking price Seattle will now have a hard time matching.

The Castillo deal puts a spotlight on the other three teams that have reportedly been at the forefront of Soto trade talks -- the Padres, Dodgers and Cardinals. Heyman also puts the Rangers in the mix, though he gives them a lower chance than San Diego, Los Angeles and St. Louis to acquire Soto.

July 29: What are odds Soto gets traded by Deadline? (report)
The chances that Juan Soto gets traded before Tuesday's Trade Deadline are "80-20," according to ESPN's Jeff Passan -- and he said there are two clear favorites to land Soto. Speaking on Dan Patrick's radio show, Passan said that the Nationals' current asking price for Soto -- reportedly five or six top prospects in exchange for the superstar -- may be a bit too high, thus the 20% chance Soto doesn't get moved by Tuesday.

But if general manager Mike Rizzo is willing to come down on that at all, then Soto could be playing in a new uniform by Tuesday. The "likeliest landing spots" remain the Padres and Dodgers, according to Passan, though the Cardinals and Mariners also remain in the mix.