Offensive reinforcements will remain the New York Yankees’ top priority heading into the 2024 off-season. So far, the Bronx Bombers have been strongly linked to Padres star Juan Soto in a blockbuster trade deal. However, the Padres, currently battling a financial crunch, are yet to reveal their stance.
Besides Soto, the Yankees have also been linked to several superstars, including the most sought-after free agent, Shohei Ohtani. The two-way phenomenon’s market value is currently estimated to surpass the $500 million mark during free agency. Certainly, the Yanks would think a thousand times before making a move. However, Bob Nightengale of USA Today Sport expects a better fight from the Bombers.
MLB Insider Expects Yankees To Push Strongly For Shohei Ohtani!
Shohei Ohtani, the most sought-after free agent of the off-season, is likely to shatter all records this winter. His market value has already shot up to around $500 million. Thus, most teams, including the New York Yankees, are hesitant to even consider making an offer to the two-way phenomena. However, a player of Ohtani’s caliber simply deserves the kind of money owing to the skills he brings to the table. So, can the Yanks make a push? Rightfully so, says Bob Nightingale of USA Today Sports. In a recent article, Bob wrote that the Los Angeles Dodgers are currently running as favorites, with the Cubs entering the race as Marcus Stroman opted out of his contract to free up $43 million off the books.
Bob also guessed that teams like the New York Yankees, New York Mets, Toronto Blue Jays, Giants, Seattle Mariners, San Diego Padres, and Texas Rangers would make a strong push for Shohei Ohtani. However, it seems a little far-fetched for now. The Yanks’ salary structure is complicated. They are already paying close to $50 million annually to two players alone: Aaron Judge and Gerrit Cole. If Ohtani enters the roster, he will cover the approximately $50 million, which accumulates to $100 million dedicated to three players alone. Hal Steinbrenner earlier made it sternly clear that he does not want to construct a $300 million payroll roster. Thus, by the early looks of it, Shohei Ohtani won’t be donning the pinstripes in the near future. His market value is simply too high even for a $7 billion franchise like the Bronx Bombers.
Padres Pressing Financial Situation Blessing For Yanks As Competition Rages!
The San Diego Padres are reportedly facing an unprecedented financial situation. As per The Athletic, they took a loan of $50 million mid-season to cover miscellaneous costs. Moreover, rumors have it that the Padres are mulling to shed payroll by over a $50 million heading into the 2024 season. If so happens, Juan Soto could be put on the trade block, which is a blessing in disguise for the Yankees.
The Yankees’ interest in Juan Soto is not news. They gunned him down during the trade deadline. But Padres remained reluctant. However, the free agency is expected to reap great rewards for the Bombers. Having said that, the Chicago Cubs have entered the market to contest for Juan Soto. It is a new competition for Yanks to beat in order to land generational star Juan Soto.