(670 The Score) Cubs president of baseball operations Jed Hoyer on Thursday confirmed he called Nationals president of baseball operations Mike Rizzo to hold trade discussions centered on superstar outfielder Juan Soto, who was later dealt to the World Series-contending Padres in a blockbuster deal.
Hoyer also called the Angels to check in on two-way star Shohei Ohtani’s availability, he told the Mully & Haugh Show. Unlike Soto, Ohtani stayed put as the trade deadline passed Tuesday evening.
“I called (Angels general manager) Perry Minasian, I called Mike Rizzo,” Hoyer said. “Obviously, you have to check in. But I think right now, going into 2023 effectively, it did not make sense for us to be involved in the Juan Soto sweepstakes. I think you have to have a real structure, a real foundation built in order to make that kind of transaction. With the Padres, they believe that this is their window and they are absolutely ready to win the World Series right now with him. And they paid a really heavy price to do that, to get one of the best hitters we’ll ever see. We’re not right now in a position as an organization to do that. Now, would we have entertained that kind of thing in 2016 or ’17 or ’18? Absolutely. Do I look forward at some point in the next few years to feeling differently? Yes. But right now, certainly the time wasn’t right. Listen, I commend the Padres. They got a generational talent and obviously gave up a big part of their future, but for the next two-and-a-half years, they’re incredibly formidable. And having worked in that market, they’ve never had a major sports title there and I think they decided they’re going to push their chips in and go for that.”
The Padres acquired Soto and first baseman Josh Bell in a package highlighted by five youngsters/prospects going back to the Nationals: left-hander Mackenzie Gore, outfielder Robert Hassell III, shortstop C.J.
Abrams, outfielder James Wood and right-hander Jarlin Susana. Washington also received veteran first baseman Luke Voit.
Gore has long been considered one of the top pitching prospects in MLB and debuted for the Padres this season. Hassell is the No. 21 prospect in baseball, according to MLB Pipeline. Abrams was selected at No. 6 overall in the 2019 MLB Draft.