The Padres won’t have to worry about an extended arbitration case with star outfielder Juan Soto this offseason. According to ESPN’s Jeff Passan, the two sides have agreed to a $23 million deal for the 2023 season.
The move gives Soto a $6 million raise from the $17.1 million agreement he reached with the Nationals ahead of the 2022 season. After reportedly rejecting a 15-year extension worth $440 million from Washington, he was traded to San Diego in August.
Soto, an All-Star in 2021 and ’22 and former World Series champion with the Nationals, struggled a bit in 52 games with the Padres after the trade, hitting .236/.388/.390 with six home runs and 16 RBIs. Still, the 24-year-old is seen as one of baseball’s brightest young stars and a franchise cornerstone.
After the significant 2022 trade, the Padres will certainly look to reach a long-term agreement for Soto, but with Friday’s news his status is set for 2023.