Why a Juan Soto Trade Makes Sense For the Astros

Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports /
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Juan Soto
Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports /

With Michael Brantley’s free agency looming, Juan Soto would provide insurance in the outfield should he leave.

Brantley is still a great all-around hitter, but he’s not getting any younger and his contract is up next season. While he’s remained with the Astros for four years, there’s no guarantee another team won’t poach him away as the Toronto Blue Jays almost did two years ago.

If the Astros trade for Soto it would solidify the outfield of Alvarez, Tucker and Soto for three years, with Alvarez and Tucker not up for free agency until 2026.

Soto would make for a great insurance policy giving the Astros financial flexibility to spend on a 1B/DH or a starting pitcher should Justin Verlander or Yuli Gurriel leave next year. And with the way Verlander’s pitching, he almost assuredly will opt into free agency and command a contract possibly in the Max Scherzer range of $40 or more million a year for two or three years.

And the final reason a Soto trade makes sense for the Astros.