It's Juan Soto's world, and right now, the Washington Nationals are living in it. The MLB has a notoriously team-friendly contract negotiation process. However, in the age of a culture shift in baseball focused on player empowerment, Soto is taking advantage of his newfound leverage.

The 23-year-old phenom declined a record breaking 15-year, $440 million contract. According to a report from Jesse Dougherty of the Washington Post, the new deal still doesn't satisfy Soto.

As of right now, the Nationals have only met two of Soto's requirements. The length and size of the contract are up to his standards, but the average annual value of the contract is lacking. Dougherty reports Soto wants an AAV in the $30 million range (the initial offer is set at $29.3M)

Bumping up the AAV will require the Nationals to A.) Give Juan Soto more money or B.) Give Juan Soto the same amount of money, but shorten his contract by 3-5 years. It won't be an easy task for the Nats, and they won't be able to pull Soto's asking price out of thin air. Dougherty reports a new offer is not expected in the near future, and that Washington is exploring trades for Soto as insurance.

The deadline to trade Soto is August 2. The Nationals hand isn't yet forced, as Soto is in arbitration until 2024 and will have to remain with the Nationals whether his needs are met or not. However, it's entirely possible the arbitrators rule in Soto's favor. He is one of the league's best position players and is still far away from his prime.

Time will tell if the Nationals can keep their gem in town long term.