The New York Yankees for their “transformational bat.” Those are the words of Yanks’ general manager Brian Cashman after completing a trade to acquire outfielder Juan Soto.
The Yankees odds to win the American League pennant shifted to +500 (Best Live Odds: ), and the odds that the Bronx Bombers win the 2024 World Series are now +950 (Best Live Odds: ), according to the MLB betting experts at FanDuel.
The favorites to win the next World Series are the Atlanta Braves () and the defending champs, the Texas Rangers are . But, unlike other sports, MLB teams can jump into championship contention quickly. Last season, a team that allowed more runs than they scored advanced to the World Series (Arizona Diamondbacks).
Check out our Yankees World Series odds after the Juan Soto trade.
Yankees’ World Series Odds
The latest odds for the World Series after the Soto trade show the Yanks at . Three teams in the AL East are among the best odds to win the next title, which is one reason the Yanks wanted to make a splash and grab a player like Soto.
Soto Will Join Aaron Judge in Yankees’ Outfield
A left-handed hitter with impeccable strike zone judgment, Soto will complement righty slugger and former AL Most Valuable Player Aaron Judge. Most likely, the team will play Soto in right field, Judge in center, and recently acquired Alex Verdugo in left.
Soto began his career with the Washington Nationals, where he was runner-up in NL Rookie of the Year voting as a 19 year old in 2019, despite not making his MLB debut until late May. He smacked three HR and had seven RBI in the World Series win that fall. That postseason reputation will be welcomed by Yankee fans thirsting for a championship. The franchise has only one World Series title this century.
Soto was traded a little over 20 months ago, in a deal that stunned baseball: the Padres sent six players to the Nats for him at the trade deadline in August of 2022. He hit 35 HR and had a league-high 132 walks in 2023, marking the third consecutive season the Dominican native led the league in free passes.
Soto is an exciting player who could fit nicely in the Bronx and Yankee Stadium. He’s known for his flashy one-step he does after almost every pitch he takes. As a kid, he idolized former Yankee Robinson Canó and even mimicked his batting stance and swing. Through his early 20s, Soto is putting up numbers that have him on pace to outdistance anything Canó did in the game.
Soto’s Rank Among Legends Through Age 24
- Soto’s 160 HR through age 24 are exactly the same as Albert Pujols (who slugged 703 in all).
- He’s fourth all-time in HR through age 24 among left-handed batters, behind three Hall of Famers: Eddie Mathews, Mel Ott, and Ken Griffey Jr.
- Soto’s career OPS+ of 157 is the sixth-highest through age 24 (at least 2,500 PA), ranking only behind Ted Williams, Mike Trout, Pujols, Mickey Mantle, and Jimmie Foxx. All of those players have a plaque in Cooperstown.
- His 640 walks through age 24 are more than Williams, more than Mantle, in fact, more than any player in MLB history.
- Only one player since 1945 has had a higher OBP than Soto’s .424 through age 24: Hall of Famer Frank Thomas.
- Only nine players since 1970 have had more hits through age 24 than Soto’s 768.
Yankees Face Free Agent Decision on Soto
Unlike his new teammates Judge and Giancarlo Stanton, Soto is not a health risk. So far, he’s played 150+ games four times, something Judge has accomplished only three times despite being seven years older.
To get reliable production from Soto long-term, however, the Yanks will need to secure their new outfielder. Soto can become a free agent after the 2024 season, and his agent (Scott Boras) is notorious for squeezing every dollar he can out of the market for his superstars.
But the Yankees wouldn’t have given up the prospects they did to get Soto if Cashman wasn’t intent on inking the OFer to a long contract. Previously, Soto turned down a 15-year, $440 million offer from Washington. The market will soon be pushed even higher with the free agency of Shohei Ohtani, who will sign a deal this offseason. The Yankees will need to exceed Judge’s $360 million to hold onto Soto beyond 2024.