Yankees land star Juan Soto in blockbuster trade with Padres

New York's lineup will now feature two of the game's most feared hitters in Soto and Aaron Judge

Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
San Diego Padres left fielder Juan Soto reacts after hitting a two-run home run against the New York Yankees at Yankee Stadium.

Juan Soto is headed to the Bronx.

The San Diego Padres traded the All-Star outfielder, along with outfielder Trent Grisham, to the New York Yankees in a blockbuster deal on Wednesday night.

In return, the Padres received right-handed pitchers Michael King, Drew Thorpe, Randy Vasquez and Jhony Brito, along with catcher Kyle Higashioka.

Soto hit .275 with 35 home runs and 109 RBIs last season while playing in all 162 regular-season games for the first time in his career. The 25-year-old lefty is a three-time All-Star who, during the 2020 pandemic-shortened season, won the National League batting title with an average of .351 in 47 games.

Over his six-year career, Soto has produced a slash line of .284/.421/.524.

Soto is an ideal fit with the Yankees, who were in need of a productive lefty bat in their lineup. In seven career games at Yankee Stadium, Soto has hit .261 with a .393 on-base percentage, 1.219 OPS, four home runs and nine RBIs in 23 at-bats.

New York's lineup will now feature two of the game's most feared hitters in Soto and Aaron Judge. The Yankees also added outfielder Alex Verdugo in a rare trade with the rival Boston Red Sox earlier in the week.

Grisham, meanwhile, is a two-time Gold Glove winner. The 27-year-old righty hit .198/.315/.352 with 13 home runs and 50 RBIs over 153 games last season.

The Padres acquired Soto in an August 2022 trade with the Washington Nationals after the star rejected a $440 million extension. The Padres went on to lose in the National League Championship Series to the Philadelphia Phillies and continued to bolster their roster in the offseason. The team entered the 2023 season with the league's third-highest payroll at around $250 million but finished just 82-80, missing the playoffs.

Soto, who is owed a base salary of $27 million in 2024 before entering free agency, then became available on the trade market.

The Padres are badly in need of pitching with National League Cy Young winner Blake Snell and starter Seth Lugo expected to depart in free agency. Free agent starting pitcher Nick Martinez signed with the Cincinnati Reds last week. 

King, a 28-year-old right-hander, has mostly been used as a reliever but finished the 2023 campaign as a starter. He posted a 2.75 ERA over 49 appearances, nine of which were starts, last season.

Thorpe was the Yankees' No. 5 prospect, according to, after splitting last season in High A and Double A. Vásquez, who sported a 2.87 ERA over 11 appearances after reaching the bigs for the first time in 2023, was ranked 13th in New York's farm system.

Brito also made his MLB debut last season, boasting a 4.28 ERA over 25 appearances. Both Vásquez and Brito made starts and worked out of the bullpen.

Higashioka, 33, logged 314 appearances over his seven seasons with the Yankees. He has a career slash line of .210/.253/.394.

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