Brian Cashman never believed Yankees were a likely landing spot for Juan Soto

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The Yankees, armed with some promising higher-level prospects, seemed like a potential trade candidate with the Nationals when it was reported that superstar Juan Soto was on the trading block, but Brian Cashman made it clear to Carton and Roberts that he never felt New York was seen as a realistic suitor for the 23-year-old.

“Nothing coming out of the Washington operation suggested that his best match was coming our way,” Cashman said on Thursday’s show. “I would take that as last year when [Max] Scherzer and [Trea] Turner got dealt to the Dodgers…Rizzo is a former scouting director and there are things he wants and will gravitate to, and his eyes and heart were set on other locations.”

Like many reports indicated leading up to the trade deadline, Cashman got the sense from Nationals GM Mike Rizzo that the Padres and Cardinals were the likeliest suitors for Soto, who wound up going to San Diego in one of the biggest blockbuster deals in baseball history.

“San Diego or St. Louis were the likeliest spots I think, and we were able to determine we weren’t as much of a match for them as other places,” Cashman said. “That’s what all the noise was about and there was no surprise when he landed in San Diego.”

The Yankees also reportedly engaged with the Angels on a potential trade for Shohei Ohtani before the Halos made it known that they wouldn’t be trading the two-way superstar, and while Cashman didn’t comment on Ohtani specifically, he made it known that he at least had contact with every team in baseball before Tuesday’s deadline.

“I can’t answer that directly, but I engaged 29 teams at all levels for what was in play, and even some guys who may not have been in play,” Cashman said. “That’s the nature of the beast. Ultimately, we made a lot of moves with the belief we improved our roster. There are so many conversations and failed efforts on a lot of platforms.”