MLB

Soto uncertain on future as Nationals fans bid him farewell ahead of Trade Deadline

By Sports Desk August 02, 2022

Washington Nationals slugger Juan Soto remains none the wiser about his future despite the franchise's fans giving him a warm farewell in Monday's 7-3 loss to the New York Mets.

The 23-year-old slugger, who won last month's Home Run Derby, has been the subject of plenty of speculation ahead of Tuesday's MLB Trade Deadline.

The Nationals have the worst record, 35-69, in the majors and are looking to sell players.

Soto homered with three walks in Monday's defeat as Nats fans were heard chanting 'we love Soto'.

"It means a lot,'' Soto said about the fans. "It kind of feels weird, too, because nothing's happened yet. We're still waiting.

"It's kind of cool at the same time, but it's kind of weird, too."

The Los Angeles Dodgers are one of the franchises who have been linked with Soto, while the player himself has not ruled out staying put.

"I feel good where I'm at,'' Soto said. "I understand it's a business and they need to do whatever they need to do.

"I'm just another player, another employee here like [former team-mate Ryan Zimmerman] used to say."

Nats manager Dave Martinez insisted they would not give up Soto for anything less than a good deal.

"You’re not going to give away these players and not get something in return that we feel like, 'Hey, this is what our future’s going to be, and this is going to be really good for us'," Martinez said.

"Those guys up there [in the front office] are working diligently to get those players that we need, if we can get it. If not, we have arguably one of the youngest best players in the game, and I love the kid."

Soto is batting at .246 with 21 home runs, 62 runs, 84 hits and 46 RBIs this season, with the third-best 2022 majors on-base percentage of .415.

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