Juan Soto 'So Much Happier' in New York Than With Padres According To Veteran

Soto has been making the most of his time in New York.
Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
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Aside from a minor injury that has kept Juan Soto sidelined for the first two games against the Los Angeles Dodgers, the former San Diego Padres outfielder is thriving in his new big-city environment.

His happiness could be a contributing factor, another factor could also be his teammates.

In a report by Bob Nightengale of USA Today, Juan Soto is having a much stronger season than he did with the San Diego Padres, several players say, because of the way Yankees center fielder Aaron Judge has embraced Soto.

"You can tell the difference," one Padre veteran said. "He’s so much happier than he was here. You can tell he was just never comfortable. Now he is. He’s a different guy."

His stats reflect the difference.

Soto is hitting .318 with a 1.027 OPS playing for the Yankees compared to .248 with a .877 OPS with the Padres after the first 64 games of the season. His 17 home runs and 53 RBIs are nearly double what he had at the point of the year while in San Diego.

In his one full season with the Padres, Soto hit 35 home runs and drove in 109 runs in 162 games. If he keeps up his current pace, he is sure to pass those numbers before the end of the regular season.


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Maren Angus-Coombs

MAREN ANGUS-COOMBS

Maren Angus-Coombs was born in Los Angeles and raised in Nashville, Tenn. She is a graduate of Middle Tennessee State University and has been a sports writer since 2008. Despite being raised in the South, her sports obsession has always been in Los Angeles. She is currently a staff writer for the LA Sports Report Network.