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Former New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter and current MLB commentator has some ideas on how to improve his former team at the deadline.
At the All-Star break, the Yankees currently sit out of playoff position; stuck behind the first place Tampa Bay Rays and a game out of a Wild Card spot.
Injuries to star players, most notably Aaron Judge, have made acquiring more offensive talent a top priority. And Jeter has a suggestion for how the Yankees can fill the massive void left by Judge.
Trade for Juan Soto.
Jeter spoke after Tuesday’s All-Star Game and said “if the Padres don’t have a good next couple weeks, I wouldn’t mind seeing the Yankees go out and get Juan Soto.”
“Especially because you don’t know how long Judge is going to be out,” Jeter continued. “You need some offense. I think it’d make sense.”
But does it?
Do The Yankees Have Enough To Get Soto?
The Padres made the splash of the 2022 deadline, trading most of their farm system to get Soto from the Washington Nationals.
But a tremendously disappointing season has given rise to speculation they could attempt a reset by trading him again.
Soto’s having another typically excellent season, with a .419 on base percentage and 148 wRC+. As a free agent after the 2024 season, an acquiring team would get him for this playoff run and another in 2024.
The Padres traded two young major league-ready players in C.J. Abrams and MacKenzie Gore, along with several other prospects. Most notably James Wood, a consensus top-10 prospect.
For the Yankees, that’d seem to imply a price tag starting with Oswald Perez or Anthony Volpe as well as Jasson Dominguez.
But given their financial might and need to win every year, a Soto trade could be even more tempting for New York.
Few other teams could trade for Soto and extend him before reaching free agency. And if he helps them make a postseason run this year, pairing him with Judge next year would make for a fearsome offensive combination.
This all relies on the Padres being willing to trade Soto though, something that’s far from set in stone. A good week, pre-break, brought San Diego within six games of a playoff spot.
Given the money they’ve invested in winning this season, they may view that as close enough to justify standing pat.
But if not, Derek Jeter may be right and the Yankees could be lighting up A.J. Preller’s phones in the next few weeks.