Wed. Aug 3rd, 2022

Nationals face backlash for Juan Soto ‘Forever’ tweet after trading him

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The Washington Nationals dealt Juan Soto to the San Diego Padres in a blockbuster trade deadline deal that yielded a large swatch of prospects.

Soto had turned down a 15-year, $440 million deal before the Nationals began to shop him. He now joins a team that is in the middle of the playoff hunt with Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado.

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The Nationals tweeted a photo of Soto after the trade. The photo showed the young outfielder in the dugout during the 2019 World Series, where the team won their first title over the Houston Astros. The tweet read “Forever.”

Juan Soto, #22 of the Washington Nationals, bats during the game between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on Sunday, July 31, 2022 in Washington, District of Columbia. 

Juan Soto, #22 of the Washington Nationals, bats during the game between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Washington Nationals at Nationals Park on Sunday, July 31, 2022 in Washington, District of Columbia. 
(Photo by Rob Tringali/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

It is unclear what the Nationals were trying to say with the tweet but was panned across social media.

Soto made his debut as a 19-year-old in 2018 and finished second in National League Rookie of the Year voting. He would garner National League MVP votes from 2019 to 2021, finishing second last season.

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Washington Nationals' Juan Soto, right, celebrates with Josh Bell after his solo home run during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets at Nationals Park, Monday, Aug. 1, 2022, in Washington, D.C. 

Washington Nationals’ Juan Soto, right, celebrates with Josh Bell after his solo home run during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the New York Mets at Nationals Park, Monday, Aug. 1, 2022, in Washington, D.C. 
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

This season, Soto has hit 21 home runs with a .246 batting average and a .894 OPS. 

San Diego also received Josh Bell in the deal. The Nationals will receive first baseman Luke Voit, shortstop C.J. Abrams, left-handed pitcher MacKenzie Gore and prospects Robert Hassell III, James Wood and Jarlin Susana.

Veteran first baseman Eric Hosmer was initially part of the package to be sent to Washington for Soto and Bell, but Hosmer reportedly invoked his limited no-trade clause, forcing the two teams to pivot to Voit in the deal. Hosmer’s no-trade clause is for 10 specific teams, with the Nationals being one of the 10. 

Washington Nationals' Juan Soto gestures to the visiting dugout as he approaches the batter's box for his first at-bat in the first inning of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals, Friday, July 29, 2022, in Washington, D.C.

Washington Nationals’ Juan Soto gestures to the visiting dugout as he approaches the batter’s box for his first at-bat in the first inning of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals, Friday, July 29, 2022, in Washington, D.C.
(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

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Hosmer was eventually traded to the Boston Red Sox.



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