The New York Yankees are finalizing a deal to acquire star outfielder Juan Soto from the San Diego Padres after days of negotiations. Things finally came to a head at the Winter Meetings and MLB Network’s Jon Morosi was first with the story.
Juan Soto trade agreement is being finalized now, source confirms.
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) December 6, 2023
The Yankees will receive Soto and outfielder Trent Grisham. San Diego receives pitchers Michael King, Drew Thorpe, Randy Vazquez, Jhony Brito, and catcher Kyle Higashioka.
It’s an immediate win-win for both teams. The Yankees get another lefty outfield bat less than 24 hours after trading for Alex Verdugo. The Padres get four much-needed arms, at least two of which should factor into their starting rotation next year.
And in Soto, the Yankees get a regular MVP candidate. He’s entering his walk year at age 25 and just led MLB in walks for the third time in his career. Soto hit .275 with 35 home runs in San Diego last season and won a World Series with the Nationals in 2019.
This headlines New York’s busy offseason thus far. Juan Soto is an immediate impact bat along with Verdugo. Grisham is a fine fourth outfielder or depth bat. Maybe Cashman will surprise everyone and non-tender Grisham while then pursuing Korean center fielder Jung-hoo Lee.
Either way, the Yankees’ outfield seems pretty set once the Soto trade becomes official. Either he or Verdugo can man either corner outfield spots. Per manager Aaron Boone, the team seems comfortable testing captain Aaron Judge’s legs in center. This isn’t the worst idea, given Jasson Dominguez is recovering from Tommy John surgery.
Additionally, Verdugo is in his contract year and could be moved midseason depending on the Yankees’ position.
But for now, it’s time to celebrate Juan Soto. Brian Cashman came into the Winter Meetings looking to make a deal, and he got his man.
Now let’s see him nab Yoshinobu Yamamoto.