Detroit Tigers aren't trading for Juan Soto; but its fun to dream.
The Detroit Tigers have already had a busy off-season. They have made some changes and are likely to keep doing so. However, could there be more in store for the Tigers? Could they add in another big-name outfielder? It's a dream scenario, but thinking about the possibilities is fun.
The Detroit Tigers will not trade for Juan Soto, but there is seemingly more and more news about the Padres being interested in moving him before the 2024 season. In an ESPN+ piece, one rival GM was quoted as saying that he felt the Padres have no choice but to move on from the slugger.
Given that the Padres are likely to move the left-handed hitting outfielder, adding a talent like Soto's would be nice. The Tigers have an outfield chock full of bats already. They already traded for Mark Canha this off-season in a move with the Brewers. While Canha is far from Soto's level, it's another bat to add to the mix.
Detroit also has Riley Greene, Parker Meadows, and Akil Baddoo in the mix. Not to mention, Kerry Carpenter patrols the outfield from time to time. So, adding another outfielder, another left-hander at that, could be problematic. However, it's Juan Soto, how can you say no?
Listen, the reality is that this is not a trade the Tigers would pull off. Or, at least, it's not a trade they would be able to pull off without giving up an arm and a leg full of controllable players that they should not be parting ways with. Soto was one of the perennial talents when he burst onto the scene, jumping through the minors.
Soto is a three-time All-Star, four-time Silver Slugger Award winner, and a World Series champion. He's got a Batting Title under his belt. While his performance has not been as great in recent years, Soto is still a high-level performer. In 2023, Soto played in all 162 games for the Padres, totaling 708 plate appearances. He slashed .275/.410/.519 with 32 doubles, a triple, and 35 home runs, 109 RBI, and 132 walks,
For the Tigers, it would be an exceptional addition to the lineup. Heck, he had more walks than strikeouts in over 700+ plate appearances. Scott Harris has to be chomping at the bit for a player like that. The issue with acquiring Soto involves more than just getting him.
Soto made $23 million in his arbitration year and is projected to earn $33 million in 2024. However, he is seeking a major extension. The 25-year-old has six years of major league experience, and it would be fun to sign him to an eight-year deal and take a chance.
The odds are extremely low, and other teams are more fit to make a trade like this, but the Tigers have to have a discussion about this, at least. It could be a huge addition to this Tigers team for years to come.