Soto a Padre…and Bell Too

The Padres pulled to big trade today, landing Juan Soto from the Nationals. In the deal they also upgraded 1B by getting Josh Bell. They gave up a truckload to get them, but there is no arguing the Friars now have a truly formidable lineup.

The Nationals, meanwhile solidified their hold on last place. However, they didn’t have much choice. Soto reportedly turned down a $440M/15 year deal. They were going to be a losing team with him as they tried to rebuild regardless. His unwillingness to not test free agency left them looking to see what they could salvage. Their farm system was poor, but now that’s changed with at least five prospects coming in having MLB regular upside.

The Padres also managed to unload Eric Hosmer. They wanted to send him along to the Nationals, but Hosmer invoked his no-trade clause. However, the Red Sox stepped up and took him instead. In 2018 the Padres signed him to an 8-year, $144M deal. He’s not a bum, but he’s also no superstar that ever merited a 9-figure salary. This year he has accumulated a 1.3 WAR—making him a roughly average to a little above average. That’s an upgrade for the Sox at 1B, especially if the Padres kick in part of the remaining $45M-ish that Hosmer is owed.

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