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Report: Padres seen as ‘frontrunner’ to acquire Juan Soto ahead of MLB trade deadline

The Padres are one of many teams that are reportedly trying to trade for the Nationals’ superstar.

Washington Nationals v Los Angeles Dodgers Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

Some team executives view the San Diego Padres as the “frontrunner” to acquire Nationals outfielder Juan Soto, according to ESPN’s Buster Olney.

The Padres are one of many teams who are in the Soto sweepstakes, a group that includes the Dodgers, Cardinals, Mariners, Rangers and Rays.

But if the Padres are serious about getting the 23-year-old superstar, they could put together a pretty enticing package of prospects and young, MLB-ready players. San Diego has three top-100 prospects, according to MLB Pipeline: outfielder Robert Hassell III, catcher Luis Campusano, and outfielder James Wood. A deal for Soto may also include a couple of former top prospects in shortstop C.J. Abrams and left-handed starter MacKenzie Gore, who is currently on the injured list.

San Diego is currently 2.5 games out of a playoff spot, but they should be getting Fernando Tatis Jr. back at some point in August. Pairing him with Soto would make for quite the dynamic duo.

Who isn’t going after Soto? The New York Yankees, apparently. They acquired an outfielder on Wednesday in Andrew Benintendi and are now focused on starting pitching. According to MLB Network insider Jon Heyman, the Yankees “aren’t currently at the forefront” of trade talks with the Nats.