A few days ago, Nationals outfielder Juan Soto rejected a 15-year, $440 million deal to remain with the team long-term. As a result, several teams are rumored to be in a position to acquire Soto, including the Mets. With the trade deadline looming, the Nationals are continuing to listen to offers for their star outfielder. If Steve Cohen were to swing a deal with the Nats, what would a Juan Soto trade look like for the Mets?
What the Mets would receive
In addition to Soto, the Mets would likely be taking on one or two of the Nationals’ larger contracts. Starting pitchers Patrick Corbin and Stephen Strasburg are due for big paydays this season, as they both signed monster contracts several years back; Corbin will be paid $23 million this season, while Strasburg will get $35 million.
However, taking on these contracts would not be good for the Mets. Corbin has had one of the worst seasons of his career, leading MLB in losses (12), hits allowed (134), and earned runs (65) over 99.2 innings pitched.
Strasburg, meanwhile, has been on the injured list five times since the start of 2020. In his only start this season, he allowed eight hits, seven earned runs, and two walks in a 7-4 loss to the Miami Marlins on June 9.
Now that we have investigated what one side of the Soto trade could look like, let’s see the other side.
What the Nationals would receive
The Nationals’ asking price for Soto will be steep. Since they are in a rebuilding phase, they are going to demand several top prospects from whichever team acquires Soto.
For the Mets, this would mean dealing away players like Francisco Álvarez, Brett Baty, Ronny Mauricio, Alex Ramirez, and Mark Vientos. It is unlikely that the Mets would give up all five, but the Nationals would demand two or three.
In addition to some top prospects, the Nationals are going to want to get some major leaguers as well. Brandon Nimmo would be a viable option to replace Soto in the outfield.
Tylor Megill or David Peterson could replace Corbin in the Nationals’ starting rotation. Both are younger, less expensive options that can pitch well for 4-6 innings when healthy.
Trading for Juan Soto would come at a hefty price for the Mets. They would have to surrender a few of their top prospects and possibly also some younger major leaguers.
It doesn’t help that the Nationals would be trading Soto within the NL East and would face him quite a bit each season. If they send Soto to a division rival like the Mets, the return package would need to speed up their rebuild significantly.
This is what a Juan Soto trade could look like for the Mets, and it’s not the best sight. Soto’s current contract expires after this season, so maybe it is best to wait until the offseason to sign him.