The first major move of the Chaim Bloom era in Boston has been completed. It sees Mookie Betts, a homegrown MVP and one of the best players in baseball, head out to L.A. along with 2018 World Series champion and former Cy Young winner David Price and cash considerations. The Dodgers are sending OF Alex Verdugo to the Red Sox and SP Kenta Maeda to the Twins for pitching prospect Brusdar Graterol to be sent to Boston along with Verdugo.
What Does This Mean for the Red Sox?
Chaim Bloom’s Red Sox career is off to a bold start. to say the least. The Sox and Mookie Betts discussed possible contract extensions in the previous weeks but never came close to a deal. Betts has subsequently been traded by the Sox as they weren’t willing to venture into the $420 million range for one of the best players in baseball. David Price and his less than stellar contract have also been dealt.
The Sox have been making a considered effort to cut their payroll below the luxury tax threshold. It became pretty obvious that Betts would be on the move after reports surfaced that he and the Sox were 2 years and $120 million apart on a deal. Much of the value of this deal for the Sox comes from dealing away David Price. Price was still owed $96 million over the next three years.
Price had a complicated history in Boston. With Price not gaining any velocity or getting any younger, this is a good move to offload Price’s contract in the deal. Trading Betts is a little trickier for Sox fans. Trading a homegrown franchise player and MVP winner then proceeding to raise ticket prices is a tough move to explain to fans. While the Sox lineup is still very dangerous, it will undoubtedly miss Betts’ in its lineup.
The Cash Considerations in the deal means that the Red Sox will pay 50% of Price’s deal.
The Sox did more than just offload half of Price’s contract though. OF Alex Verdugo has got a taste of the bigs and has the ability to be a middle of the order bat for years to come. He’s been a highly rated prospect in L.A. and can certainly contribute to the Sox lineup next year. Brusdar Graterol is the other prospect heading to Boston and is a big right-hander with a fastball that can touch triple digits and sits in the high 90’s. The big hurler has the potential to be a top of the rotation guy for years to come.
What Does This Mean for the Dodgers?
The Dodgers have been after the white whale of a World Series title for some time now. Adding one of the best players in baseball even if just for this next season has to change that. Right? David Price is no slouch either. While he isn’t what he once was, he still has some gas left in the tank. How he bared down in the 2018 Postseason speaks to that.
The Dodgers are dead set in win-now mode and have been for some time. Parting with Verdugo may sting a bit for one year of Betts, but even just a year of Betts is well worth it. The Dodgers also part with Kenta Maeda, who was a solid back end of the rotation piece. Maeda has also had some experience coming out of the bullpen. Price is set to step in for Maeda and is certainly an upgrade.
What Does This Mean for the Twins?
The Twins part with pitching prospect Brusdar Graterol. He’s a heavy set hurler with a lot of velocity but is still a very raw prospect. Maeda in return isn’t a bad haul for a team really trying to put themselves over the edge and take the next step in the playoffs. Maeda will most likely be set for a spot in the rotation. However, it wouldn’t surprise me to see them experiment with Maeda in the bullpen.
The Dodgers Make Room for Betts
To make room in the outfield for Mookie Betts, the Dodgers dealt OF Joc Pederson and OF prospect Andy Pages to the L.A. Angels for middle infield prospect Luis Rengifo. Pederson is a streaky power bat that could be a nuclear combination with Trout and Rendon in Anaheim if he finds any type of consistency.
The Dodgers Win the Trade
The Dodgers get one year of one of the best baseball players on the planet. A lineup with Cody Bellinger and Mookie Betts is scary enough, nevermind the rest of the supporting cast. Even if it is just one year of Betts, it puts the Dodgers firmly in the driver’s seat for the 2020 World Series. That is definitely worth it.
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