The Padres shocked baseball again with their $350 million, 11-year deal for Manny Machado, and they aren’t stopping there.
Next up: Deals — or at least discussions — for Juan Soto and Josh Hader, arguably the game’s top hitter and top closer.
New Padre Xander Bogaerts, following the Machado signing (and his own for $280 million), told Soto, “They’ve got to bring a bigger truck for you.”
Bogaerts explained, “Just given his age  and his talent … I can’t imagine the amount he will get. It’s crazy, man. You can never count these guys out. They’ve done stuff that no one would have thought they’d ever do.”
The Padres are in a mid-sized market with geographic challenges, so unlike Mets owner Steve Cohen, Padres managing partner Peter Seidler is truly shocking the world with his spending.
The Padres are expected to reach out soon on both Soto and Hader.
Hader is a free agent after the year, and while Soto isn’t a free agent until after 2024, he is repped by Scott Boras.
“We’re open to talking, we’re just waiting,” Soto said in the Padres clubhouse, referring to himself and Boras.
Boras isn’t known for passing up chances for free agency with great players, especially extraordinarily young ones.
But the Padres are determined.
“It’s very rare that a team can put together a group of players in the primes of their careers, or close to the prime, where there are four players at this level,” Boras said. “For the Padres, they’ve moved a mountain to San Diego. And it’s called Mt. Crushmore.”
Don’t assume those nice words means it’ll be easy.
Boras called Soto a “generational” player and stressed the value of age, mentioning Soto has nine more prime years before he’s 32 (compared to three for Machado).
Soto previously rebuffed a record $440 million — coincidentally also his on-base percentage the past three years (.440).
“It’s a business at the end of the day,” Soto said. “I just want to come out here and concentrate on playing baseball. I’ll let Scott do the job.”
Hader views it similarly. “It’s a great place to be, but at the end of the day business is business,” he said.
Hader also said he would “absolutely” listen to any overture by the team.
“If it’s a conversation they want to have, we’ll definitely have it,” he said.
Soto understandably said he loves what’s going on around here.
But Soto also said, “Every player wants to get a try at free agency, and a chance to decide where they want to go and where is best for their family.”
By: Ny Post