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Juan Soto's Market Value Is Hilariously High

It's going to take a team's entire farm system to force the Nationals to trade Juan Soto.

Google "Juan Soto trade rumors" and you are going to be inundated with information, speculation, and a lot of wild potential trade packages. There's a reason for this. In Juan Soto's first few seasons, he's slashed .292/.427/.540, with a 162-game average of 34 home runs so far. Those are Ted Williams type of numbers. He gets on base at a prodigious rate. He hits everything. He is every bit the once-in-a-lifetime generational hitter that everyone is saying he is.

Why Is He So Valuable?

Here is why a team trying to get Juan Soto at this trade deadline is going to cost him. First off, he's still on a contract for two-and-a-half seasons. Any playoff-bound team that acquires Soto is going to have him for 3 pennant races. It's not like you're trading for a player that people call a "rental." That is a dehumanizing word that I hope we eradicate soon, but it has a meaning. It's often used to refer to a trade piece just before the deadline that a team will only have for the rest of the current season. Having the best hitter in the majors for 2 and a half seasons has a high cost.

Corbin's Contract To Offset Price?

In virtually every trade scenario involving Juan Soto, there is the idea of pairing Patrick Corbin's enormous leftover contract to dilute the price of Soto. Patrick Corbin signed a 6-year $140 million contract in 2019. He's been pretty terrible ever since the contract was signed.

For most teams, the only alternative is to seriously give up about 5 players (3 elite prospects and two MLB-ready players) in return. This is simply too high an asking price for most teams, and that's when you get the idea of teams eating Corbin's exorbitant contract in return. This idea was at least partially nixed on Wednesday however, by Nationals GM Mike Rizzo.

This means if a team wants to trade for Juan Soto this season, they're going to have to pony up the entire farm.

A Team Is Going To Pay In Dollars Or Prospects

We've already established that Juan Soto is worth half a billion dollars, especially if you extend him sooner rather than later. Just to give an idea, this is the most common trade package suggested for a Dodgers/Nationals Juan Soto deal. This particular one is per Jack Baer at Yahoo sports.

Nationals get: 2B Gavin Lux, C Diego Cartaya (Dodgers' No. 1 prospect, No. 13 overall), RHP Bobby Miller (No. 2, No. 26 overall), OF Andy Pages (No. 4, No. 47 overall), INF Eddys Leonard (No. 8), LHP Maddux Bruns (No. 12)

Dodgers get: Juan Soto

For fans of baseball who despise that the richest teams also have the richest resources, I would remind them that development and draft do not inherently cost money. It costs money to hire good staff. Besides, every team ultimately has the money to invest in staff, and every team definitely has the money to invest in a player like Juan Soto. Still, this would be a monstrous haul for the Nationals and a large depletion of talent for the Dodgers. If Soto agreed to sign an extension, losing this talent would hurt less, but it's still a risky decision.

Last Thoughts

We can leave all the prognostications and strategies aside and state a simple fact. If you want a generational talent like Juan Soto, you have to pay for him.