Juan Soto Rumors: Yankees 'Reached Out' to Nationals to 'Express Interest' in Trade

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVJuly 23, 2022

PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 22: Juan Soto #22 of the Washington Nationals smiles in the dugout before the MLB game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on July 22, 2022 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Mike Christy/Getty Images)
Mike Christy/Getty Images

The New York Yankees are reportedly exploring the possibility of trading for Washington Nationals star Juan Soto.

According to Jack Curry of YES Network, the American League East team "reached out to express interest in" a potential trade. The move put the ball in Washington's court as it decides what would be an acceptable trade package for a 23-year-old under team control through the 2024 campaign.

Soto isn't the only slugger on New York's radar, as its own star in Aaron Judge is set for free agency after this season.

ESPN's Buster Olney reported Saturday that Judge is more of a priority, which isn't a surprise since the 30-year-old is the face of the franchise and has told reporters he wants to stay with the Bronx Bombers.

Still, it's not every day a player of Soto's caliber becomes available. He is in the early stages of his prime, and the Yankees or another team could make him a franchise cornerstone for a decade-plus.

Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reported last Saturday that the Nationals were willing to listen to trade proposals because Soto rejected a 15-year, $440 million contract offer.

Many teams probably don't have the prospects or financial resources to commit to both Soto and Judge, but the Yankees operate in the No. 1 market with their own television channel and a payroll that is almost always among the tops in the league.

Forbes ranked them as Major League Baseball's most valuable franchise at $6 billion in March.

Soto is a two-time All-Star and two-time Silver Slugger who has already won a batting title and World Series crown. New York has a World Series-caliber roster already, as evidenced by its MLB-best 65-30 record, and adding the Nationals star ahead of the Aug. 2 trade deadline would be quite the blow for other contenders.