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Tuesday, July 23, 2024
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Juan Soto Puts On a Show for Potential Megadeal Suitors

  • Soto won the 2022 Home Run Derby just days after reportedly turning down a 15-year, $440 million offer from the Nationals.
  • The contract would have been the largest in MLB history by total value.
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Juan Soto cemented himself as one of baseball’s brightest young stars with Monday’s Home Run Derby win.

The victory gave him even more leverage than he already has as he eyes what is likely to be one of the largest contracts in MLB history.

Over the weekend, Soto reportedly turned down a 15-year, $440 million offer from the Nationals — a deal that would have passed Mike Trout’s 12-year, $426.5 million contract as the largest in major league history by total value.

While the total number will certainly turn some heads, the AAV of “only” $29.3 million would rank the proposed deal 21st all-time by that metric.

This is actually not the first offer Soto and mega-agent Scott Boras have turned down this year: In February, they rejected a 13-year, $350 million extension that would have carried a $29.6 million AAV.

Now, after the latest rejection, Washington is supposedly entertaining trades for the superstar ahead of the Aug. 2 deadline.

The 23-year-old currently makes $17.1 million but still has two seasons of arbitration before he hits free agency. Suitors will thus be forced to give up huge assets to the Nats — one of the “biggest trade packages ever,” per Jeff Passan.

Soto will likely be looking for a team that can both compete for a World Series and pay him the monstrous contract he’s surely due.

It’s now clear that won’t happen in Washington — Soto reportedly did not arrive in L.A. until 1:30 a.m. on the morning of the Derby. He won anyway.

Still, the budding superstar is already better off than most: Rookie Julio Rodriguez made more money as runner-up in the Derby ($750,000) than he will this season with the Mariners ($700,000).

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