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#pounditFriday, February 23, 2024

Full details of Juan Soto to Yankees trade

Juan Soto talks with the media

After an offseason full of rumors that the New York Yankees would pursue a trade for Juan Soto, the outfielder will now be wearing pinstripes.

The Yankees and San Diego Padres have completed a trade that will send Soto and fellow outfielder Trent Grisham to New York.

In return for Soto and Grisham, the Padres are receiving pitchers Michael King, Jhony Brito, Randy Vasquez, Drew Thorpe, and catcher Kyle Higashioka.

King, Brito and Vasquez all spent time with the big-league club in 2023, while Thorpe is a minor league prospect. Vasquez, 25, went 2-2 with a 2.87 ERA and 1.27 WHIP over 37.2 innings with the Yankees last season. Brito, who is also 25, went 9-7 with a 4.28 ERA and 1.22 WHIP over 90.1 innings in the bigs. King, 28, started nine games last season but has mostly been used as a reliever during his career. He has a 3.38 ERA and 1.19 WHIP over 247.2 career innings. Thorpe was a second-round pick in 2022 and went 14-2 with a 2.52 ERA and 0.98 WHIP across two levels of minor-league ball last season.

This is the second time in a year and a half that Soto has been traded. The Washington Nationals sent him and Josh Bell to San Diego ahead of the 2022 trade deadline for six players. Soto, who was having a substandard 2022 season with the Nats that season, batted just .236 over 52 games that year for San Diego.

Though the 25-year-old got off to a slow start in 2023, Soto’s final numbers were strong. He batted .275 and slugged 35 home runs for the Padres. He played in all 162 games and led the league with 132 walks. That all helped him earn an All-Star selection and Silver Slugger award.

Soto is entering his final season under team control and will be a free agent after the season. So the Yankees are giving up a lot of pitching depth in order to turn around a team that went 82-80 in 2023.

The acquisition of Soto and Grisham comes a day after the Yankees acquired another outfielder — Alex Verdugo — in a trade with the rival Red Sox. The Yankees gave up three pitching prospects for Verdugo.

The Yankees clearly deemed their 2023 finish unacceptable and are working hard to vastly improve their on-field product for 2024. And if they’re trading away so much pitching, you can figure they probably have plans to sign a few arms this offseason. They are in the mix to sign one of the top pitchers on the market.

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