Mookie Betts will be his team’s most indispensable player next season.
MLB.com’s Will Leitch predicted Tuesday the Boston Red Sox outfielder will be the team’s best player in the 2020 season. While there are many ways to rank a given group of players, Leitch relies on the WAR, or wins above replacement, statistic to conclude Betts will shine brightest among his teammates.
Leitch also included another bold prediction about Betts’ upcoming season.
“And our first big offseason prediction: Betts stays put,” Leitch wrote.
Betts is entering a contract year, and his future perhaps is the biggest issue the Red Sox must address this offseason. Some rumors claim the Red Sox will trade him if they conclude they won’t be able to sign him to a new contract, but Leitch is convinced he’ll remain with the team.
Leitch’s prediction of Betts as Boston’s best player in 2020 by WAR isn’t so bold. Betts’ 6.8 WAR in 2019 was the highest on the Red Sox, some distance ahead of Rafael Devers and Xander Bogaerts, who were second and third on the team with 5.3 and 5.2 WARs, respectively. Betts would have to underperform dramatically or Devers, Bogaerts or another breakout star would have to post MVP-like numbers in order to crown a new WAR king in Boston.