Washington Nationals star Juan Soto is counting down the hours until the 2022 MLB trade deadline passes at 6 p.m. ET on Tuesday.
"I just want to get it over with and see what's going to happen," he said Sunday following his team's 5-0 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals, per MLB.com's Jessica Camerato. "I mean, just go over that day and start over here or wherever I'm at."
On July 16, The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal reported Soto turned down a 15-year, $440 million contract offer from the Nationals. As a result, Washington was willing to seriously entertain trade offers for the two-time All-Star.
From that moment on, Soto's future has been the hottest topic across baseball. It isn't every day a 23-year-old on a Hall of Fame trajectory hits the trade market.
There's also a sense of inevitability about his possible departure from Washington.
ESPN's Jeff Passan put the odds of a deal at 80 percent when asked Friday about the situation on the Dan Patrick Show. Passan added, however, that the Nationals' high asking price was turning suitors away from making a final agreement:
Dan Patrick Show @dpshow
"If he [Mike Rizzo] continues to stick to the ask that he's put out to teams up until this point, I'm not sure Juan Soto is going anywhere. He's been asking for 125% of Juan Soto's value."<br><br>-<a href="https://twitter.com/JeffPassan?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@JeffPassan</a> discusses the likelihood of Juan Soto getting moved<a href="https://t.co/A7PJZRSpqn">https://t.co/A7PJZRSpqn</a> <a href="https://t.co/Iym4QKfjBD">pic.twitter.com/Iym4QKfjBD</a>
General manager Mike Rizzo acknowledged Wednesday the Nats had discussed a Soto trade with teams around the league without stating definitively whether the player will stay or go, per Chelsea Janes of the Washington Post.
"I will say this: We're going to have to get the deal that we want that makes the most sense that gets us an opportunity to become a championship organization than not trading him," he told reporters. "That's it in a nutshell."
If Soto remains in Washington after the trade deadline expires, then he'll at least know he isn't going anywhere until the winter. But it will probably provide little reprieve in terms of halting any speculation.
The Nationals have the worst record in MLB at 35-68. There isn't much else to talk about regarding the 2019 World Series champions aside from whether they'll move their franchise cornerstone.
And the discourse will only accelerate once the trading window opens again after the 2022 season.
At this point, you wouldn't blame Soto for wanting to wind up on a different team by Tuesday, if only because he could put this matter to bed.