3 Blue Jays players the Padres should demand in a Juan Soto trade

If the San Diego Padres were to trade Juan Soto to the Toronto Blue Jays, they should demand any combination of these three players as part of the return.

San Diego Padres v Toronto Blue Jays
San Diego Padres v Toronto Blue Jays / Mark Blinch/GettyImages
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2) The San Diego Padres should demand Alejandro Kirk in a Juan Soto trade with the Blue Jays

The catcher position was a weakness the Padres had to overcome for much of the season. Players like Austin Nola and Brett Sullivan really underwhelmed at the beginning of the season and contributed in a big way to this offense being so lackluster. Gary Sanchez really solidified things, but he's a free agent. Luis Campusano played well in limited action too, but he's far from proven.

With the catcher spot still an area where the Padres must improve in 2024, Alejandro Kirk makes a lot of sense as a potential target in a Blue Jays trade. With Toronto having two starting caliber catchers in Kirk and Danny Jansen, they should be fine to give one up in a Soto deal. Kirk makes more sense than Jansen for a couple of reasons.

First, Jansen is incredibly injury-prone while Kirk has stayed mostly healthy throughout his MLB career. Jansen has just one season in which he has played over 100 games and that came back in 2019. Jansen's inability to play in games has nothing to do with his performance. He simply can't stay healthy.

Another reason why Kirk is a better target for San Diego is the team control. Jansen, like Soto, is a free agent after the 2024 season while Kirk has two more years of additional control. Jansen is coming off a better season than Kirk, so perhaps the Jays will be fine parting with Kirk.

Kirk is coming off a down year, but was an All-Star and took home a Silver Slugger for his performance in 2022. He's just 25 years old, and is one of the more underrated contact hitters in the game. He doesn't walk much, but he also rarely ever strikes out. This past season, he drew 42 walks compared to just 45 strikeouts. He should be able to keep the line moving, while the Padres offense stalled in big spots last season.