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With Padres Slashing $83 Million From Payroll, Yankees’ Path to Pursuing Juan Soto Seems Clear, but Will an Injury Scare Interrupt the Journey?

Published 09/26/2023, 8:00 AM EDT

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The New York Yankees should start thinking about 2024. Despite facing immense heat from fans, the front office has lagged in trades and sales. The club has paid the price for Brian Cashman’s lack of decision-making but the 2023 offseason can hopefully go better. One player New York should have its eyes on is Juan Soto.

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The San Diego Padres star’s current contract will see him play through 2024, after which the outfielder will be a free agent. But with the way 2023 has gone for the Friars, they may be looking to cut Soto loose from his contract. The club is anyway looking to lower its position as the team with the third-highest MLB payroll. Might they work together with the Bronx?

Juan Soto in Pinstripes Next?


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The Yankees are not afraid to spend money if they can get their hands on big talent. They could certainly use the help in left field, which has been an utter disaster in 2023. Veterans have given a terrible performance all season long, either in a slump or on the injured list. The club had to bring out the kids from Triple-A, dubbed the Baby Bombers.

The 24-year-old Soto would fit right in, with Anthony Volpe leading the charge and Jasson Dominguez as the promising young talent. Not to mention captain Aaron Judge, and Anthony Rizzo if he returns healthy in 2024. Soto in Pinstripes would be a good fit, should he choose to come to New York.


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A point to be noted is that the Padres are now looking to cut payroll costs. Despite their $283 million reputation, the team is currently 77-80 and fourth in the NL West. They also just announced that by 2024, the Friars’ payroll will ideally look closer to $200 million. As Kevin Acee wrote, the reason is “in part because they are out of compliance with MLB regulations regarding their debt service ratio.”

If they do indeed trade away Soto instead of re-signing him for a year to avoid arbitration, the Yankees should be keeping an eye out for opportunities. Aaron Boone once declared that he would want to see the youngster in Pinstripes. What’s more, even Derek Jeter wanted him in New York. The only reason to be possibly afraid of signing him in the winter would be an injury.

Will the New York Yankees Consider an Injured Juan Soto?

Critics would say an injured player fits right in with the current state of the Yankees. Yesterday, Soto took a foul ball on his right arm while standing on the deck circle, raising concerns about an injury. At this point in the season, the Padres are barely clinging to a Wild Card spot.


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The ball was off from teammate Fernando Tatis Jr. in the first inning, and it looked painful for Soto. The slugger winced in pain before he was checked out, but fortunately, all seemed okay. Soto kept a hold on his bat and played the entire game without incident.


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Perhaps it was lucky that the ball came for his right arm while Soto bats left. It will certainly leave a nasty bruise but injury concerns are not as serious. Perhaps the Yankees should sign him after all!

WATCH THIS STORY – Juan Soto Turned Down a Whopping $350 Million Deal From Washington Nationals – Is New York His Next Choice?

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Written by:

Arunima Bhanot


One take at a time

Arunima Bhanot is an MLB writer at EssentiallySports. Her tryst with MLB was accidental, but what followed was nothing short of a pursuit of excellence. Arunima's articles have been recognized as Editor's Picks on multiple occasions, highlighting her exceptional attention to detail and insightful coverage.
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Edited by:

Deepanshi Bajaj