5 trade destinations for Juan Soto if the San Diego Padres decide to sell

San Diego Padres v Toronto Blue Jays
San Diego Padres v Toronto Blue Jays / Vaughn Ridley/GettyImages
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The San Diego Padres are on the brink of selling. At 45-50 entering Wednesday's play, they're 10.5 games back in the NL West and 7.5 games back of the third Wild Card spot in the National League. They're not dead yet, but they're awfully close.

If the Padres do indeed decide to sell, players on expiring deals should be first to go. Guys like Blake Snell and Josh Hader can get them really nice pieces despite being rentals.

Expiring contracts should be the first players moved, but the Padres do have a decision to make with Juan Soto. The superstar outfielder will be a free agent after next season and seems to be unlikely to ink an extension prior. Rather than risk Soto walking in free agency for nothing more than a draft pick, the Padres can look to recoup most of the value they lost by trading for him by dealing the superstar now with 1.5 years of control.

If the Padres do make Soto available, most of the league will be in on him. The price tag is expected to be astronomical. Here are the five destinations I think make the most sense.

1) Padres trade destination for Juan Soto: New York Yankees

The New York Yankees need help. That is very clear. Their offense has been among baseball's worst since Aaron Judge went down with an injury, and with the team spiraling further out of postseason contention, a trade like this could be what they need to turn their season around.

New York is sitting in last in the AL East and are 2.5 games out of the third Wild Card spot. Their season is far from over, but with their recent struggles, a big move has to be made.

The Yankees have the prospect capital led by the likes of Jasson Dominguez, Oswald Peraza, and Austin Wells, and can offer a destination Soto might like as well. They're a big market team with the resources to give Soto a blank check.

Brian Cashman has often shied away from making these big prospect moves, but the Yanks need a big bat. Acquiring one with another guaranteed year of control could be what gets him to do it. Soto and Judge hitting second and third in that lineup makes it scary.