Report: Juan Soto and Josh Bell expected to be traded to Padres

Aug 2, 2022, 9:10 AM | Updated: 12:39 pm
Washington Nationals' Juan Soto smiles as he celebrates after his solo home run during the fourth i...

Washington Nationals' Juan Soto smiles as he celebrates after his solo home run during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets at Nationals Park, Monday, Aug. 1, 2022, in Washington. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

The San Diego Padres indicated on Monday they were going for it by acquiring star closer Josh Hader, but that was just an appetizer to their full intentions. According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan and MLB Network’s Jon Morosi, the Padres have agreed to acquire Juan Soto and Josh Bell from the Washington Nationals for a massive haul going the other way.

Washington will receive shortstop C.J. Abrams, outfielders Robert Hassell III and James Wood, pitchers MacKenzie Gore and Jarlin Susana, plus an unnamed minor-league player. Padres infielder Eric Hosmer was reportedly also included in the package but opted not to waive a no-trade clause, per Morosi.

The deal advanced without Hosmer included, and San Diego threw in first baseman Luke Voit to complete it, reports Passan.

San Diego entered trade deadline day at 58-46, in second place but 12 games behind the NL West-leading Los Angeles Dodgers. The Padres, however, are in the second NL Wild Card slot as of Tuesday.

Soto entered deadline day as the biggest name on the block, with Washington considering bids for the 23-year-old slugger after he turned down a $440 million, 15-year deal to stay with the team. Soto can be a free agent after 2024, and the St. Louis Cardinals, Padres and Dodgers were the trio of teams considered as most likely to offer a trade package that could persuade Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo to unload his franchise cornerstone.

Soto (.894) and Bell (.877) are top-12 in MLB in OPS and top-20 in position player WAR so far this season.

They join a talented core in San Diego that already includes Manny Machado and Fernando Tatis Jr., the latter of whom has not played yet this season due to a wrist injury.

The trade market got busy Monday as several teams made big moves, with the Yankees acquiring Athletics starter Frankie Montas, the Padres picking up All-Star closer Hader from the first-place Brewers, and the Astros obtaining slugger Trey Mancini from the Orioles.

Hader was acquired in exchange for recently benched closer Taylor Rogers and three other players in a blockbuster deal between NL playoff contenders.

The NL Central-leading Brewers shipped one of the game’s top relievers to the Padres for Rogers, right-hander Dinelson Lamet, outfielder Esteury Ruiz and pitching prospect Robert Gasser.

Hader has 29 saves while Rogers has 28, though the Padres recently removed Rogers from the closer role after he blew consecutive opportunities in a series at Detroit. The Padres obtained Rogers from Minnesota on opening day.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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