MLB Rumors: Ohtani staying in LA? Soto asking price, Bellinger mystery, Yamamoto truth

  • Yamamoto's supposed preference to play with a Japanese team is creating some mixed messaging
  • The Padres have a reported asking price for Juan Soto
  • Cody Bellinger could be the source of enraging internal debates for teams in need of outfield help
  • Some think that Shohei Ohtani's fate is already set

Los Angeles Angels v Los Angeles Dodgers
Los Angeles Angels v Los Angeles Dodgers / Ronald Martinez/GettyImages
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Padres asking price for Juan Soto more than tenable, if to believed

One of the most attractive trade targets thought to be available this winter is San Diego Padres outfielder Juan Soto. Plenty of MLB teams could use outfield help that isn't ice cold at the plate, and Soto's prolificacy as a batter would be incredibly attractive for any team.

Of course, as with any trade, it all comes down to price and how much the Padres are hoping to get.

Apparently, he may come cheaper than one might think, with the current rumor from Jon Heyman of the New York Post suggesting two top-100 prospects could get a deal done.

Why so inexpensive? A big part of the calculus is that Soto is a free agent after 2023. Teams that trade for Soto might be interested in extending his contract beyond his existing obligations, but it's no guarantee. They're only sure to have him on the roster for the remainder of the 2024 season, so he's effectively a rental.

Put that way, two top-100 prospects might even be a little steep for Soto, depending on how much production he gets a given team.