The New York Yankees will be heavily linked to Washington Nationals star Juan Soto in the coming week.
Contract extension talks between Soto and the Nationals broke down recently, leading to reports that the struggling team is indeed willing to listen to offers for its best player.
Whenever a big-ticket name like Soto becomes available, the Yanks will always come up in conversations. Given that the MLB-best Yankees have a pretty elite farm system and a need for another outfielder, this is magnified further.
The interesting dynamic here is the status of Aaron Judge as a free agent following the 2022 season. Could Brian Cashman and Co. simply opt to replace Judge with Juan Soto? It makes some sense given the fact that Soto is still only 23 and Judge just recently turned 30. He could also look to pair the two up together, creating a modern-day Murderers’ Row.
With that in mind, let’s check in on how a Soto trade to the Yankees might look ahead of the Aug. 2 deadline.
Related: Ideal Juan Soto trade scenarios
Projecting a Juan Soto trade to the New York Yankees
The Yankees have been hesitant to even discuss top prospects Anthony Volpe and Oswald Peraza. That will likely change if they become suitors in what will be a widespread sweepstakes for Soto.
Still only 23, Soto is a generational type player. With that will come the need to offer up what might be the largest bounty of prospects in recent MLB history. In short, Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo would demand Volpe as the headliner in a package for Soto.
From Washington’s perspective, this gives it that young potential franchise cornerstone as the team goes into full-scale rebuild mode.
Considered one of the top-10 prospects in all of baseball per MLB.com, Volpe has made his way up to Double-A. Thus far this season with Somerset, the shortstop has hit 13 homers while driving in 45 runs and stealing 35 bases in just 79 games.
Related: Ideal New York Yankees trade targets
From there, Washington would have its pick of other top-end Yankees prospects outside of the aforementioned Peraza. New York would be inclined to keep the shortstop if it is forced to move off Volpe. The Nationals would also likely want to look in another direction.
That’s where outfielder Jasson Dominguez would have to come into play. He’s currently the New York Yankees’ No. 3 prospect behind Volpe and Peraza. The 19-year-old Dominican native is currently in Single-A Tampa and is performing at an exceptional level. Dominguez is seen as a five-tool prospect with All-Star upside. These would be the two headliners heading back to D.C. in a Soto trade. Here’s an outline of an hypothetical trade.
- Washington Nationals trade: Juan Soto, Patrick Corbin
- New York Yankees trade: Anthony Volpe, Jasson Dominguez, Ken Waldichuk, Hayden Wesneski, Everson Pereira, Randy Vasquez
Talk about a haul for Washington. We’re looking at four of the Yankees’ top-seven prospects. In addition to Volpe and Dominguez, that includes two pitchers in Waldichuk and Wesneski who have ace upside.
Waldichuk is currently in Triple-A and could join the Nationals’ rotation immediately.
Ken Waldichuk stats (2022): 6-3 record, 2.44 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 106 strikeouts in 70 innings (Double-A, Triple-A)
As for Wesneski, he’s also pitched well at Triple-A this season, putting up a 3.51 ERA and 1.15 WHIP while striking out 76 batters in 82 innings. He could also join Waldichuk with the big league club.
If the Washington Nationals do indeed decide to trade Juan Soto, it would not be a surprise if they demanded a team take on Patrick Corbin’s bloated contract. He’s playing under a six-year, $140 million contract and has been a complete disaster this season. The soon-to-be 33-year-old hurler is pitching to a 5.87 ERA and 1.70 WHIP in 19 starts.
A native of New York, Corbin has been linked to the Yankees a ton in recent years. In lieu of giving up even more prospects, the Yanks opt to take on Corbin’s contract with the hope that he can return to form.
Remember, these Yankees are in the market for a pitcher following the injury news surrounding Luis Severino.
As it is, the New York Yankees pulling off a Juan Soto trade is not highly unrealistic. They have the assets. They have the need. They have the money. Why not make an earth-shattering move to shake up the foundation of MLB ahead of the August 2 trade deadline?