Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Yankees and San Diego Padres remain “far apart” in trade negotiations for star outfielder Juan Soto, according to several sources.

There’s a lot to digest, so we’ll cite accordingly.

According to SNY’s Andy Martino, the Yankees are one of nine teams interested in Soto. However, word is the Padres see the Yankees as the only “plausible suitors” despite the latest hangup.

The reason for the stall in talks? San Diego now wants a deal centered around righty Michael King. Furthermore, they also want the Yankees to take on outfielder Trent Grisham’s projected $5 million in salary. The Yankees have rightfully balked, as Grisham hit just .198 last season and owns a career strikeout rate (K%) of 26.2.

The Post’s Jon Heyman added that the Yankees also remain hesitant to include minor leaguer Drew Thorpe, the reigning Minor League Pitching Prospect of the Year.

Yankees fans may panic at this, and perhaps it is a legitimate concern. The Padres seem to be continually upping their demands for the 25-year-old Soto, and why shouldn’t they? Soto fits the Yankees almost perfectly. San Diego won’t move him unless the return package fits its own needs.

Thus, this just seems the latest round of negotiating chess. The Yankees of course should be wary of dealing King, who was an elite bullpen arm before shifting to the rotation in August. He posted a 2.23 ERA in nine starts.

That said, should the Yankees let King hold up the deal? Absolutely not. Juan Soto is Juan Soto and if the offer is otherwise acceptable, plus King, general manager Brian Cashman should pull the trigger.

In turn, the Padres know they’re not in the best position to make demands either. They literally cannot afford to both keep Soto and also add at least 500 innings’ worth of pitching. Perhaps even more!

Juan Soto is getting traded somewhere this offseason. The Yankees should remain motivated to deal.

Josh Benjamin has been a staff writer at ESNY since 2018. He has had opinions about everything, especially the Yankees and Knicks. He co-hosts the “Bleacher Creatures” podcast and is always looking for new pieces of sports history to uncover, usually with a Yankee Tavern chicken parm sub in hand.