The San Diego Padres have been one of the busiest teams in baseball over the past few years.
Not only have the Padres been active in free agency and the trade market, but they have been determined to lock in their core. Yu Darvish, Manny Machado, and Fernando Tatis Jr. have all signed long term extensions, ensuring that trio will help lead the Padres for years to come. However, with the likes of Josh Hader and Juan Soto approaching free agency, the Padres’ work is not done.
San Diego Padres not done with long term deals
Soto may be next in line. According to Hector Gomez, the Padres are going to “do everything they can” to lock Soto into a long term deal. Gomez went on to note that such an extension would be even better than what Machado received.
One can certainly understand why the Padres would want to keep Soto for the long term. He has been one of the best hitters in the game since his debut, a player whose career to this point compares favourably with the likes of Frank Robinson, Mickey Mantle, and Hank Aaron per Baseball Reference’s similarity score. He has a lifetime .287/.424/.526 batting line in his 2667 plate appearances, hitting 125 homers and 116 doubles. Add in his impressive plate discipline, with 508 walks and 448 strikeouts at just 24 years old, and it is easy to see why Soto would be coveted on the open market.
That is the challenge facing the Padres. Soto knows his value and is going to maximize what he can get, either in an extension or on the open market. That long term deal Machado received would not even be a viable starting point, and he just landed the fourth largest contract in MLB history. The Padres have not been shy about opening the vaults but Soto is going to be a test to see how far that willingness to spend goes.
The San Diego Padres are reportedly looking to extend Juan Soto. They better be ready to empty the vault.