We're still about two weeks away from the trade deadline and the scuttlebutt that always precedes the anticipated date has ramped up. And yet one prominent name -- who might or might not even be a candidate to change teams by the time the deadline rolls around -- has already generated plenty of buzz.
Earlier this spring, ESPN's Buster Olney laid out the possible scenario in which Washington Nationals superstar Juan Soto could be dealt and news that Soto has rejected a $440 million contract offer from the Nats has ignited speculating a trade could happen. Does that mean it will happen? Certainly not. Does that mean it should happen? Heck no.
But if Soto really is a trade candidate by July, then it's only a slight exaggeration to suggest that the 2022 season that we've watched unfold over the past few weeks could be turned upside down. Soto is that good.
A few years ago, in 2018, when former Oriole Manny Machado was nearing free agency and toiling for a rebuilding team, he emerged as a prime trade candidate. At the time, we looked at how a Machado trade might affect the title chase. We did that by trading Machado -- virtually of course -- to every team, then seeing how the numbers shook out.