When the week started, it seemed as if Mookie Betts’ most likely West Coast destination should the Boston Red Sox trade him would be the San Diego Padres.
Now, it’s beginning to look like the Los Angeles Dodgers might be in the best position to land the superstar outfielder.
The Athletic’s Andy McCullough reported Thursday morning the Dodgers “remain engaged” in discussions with the Red Sox about a trade for the 2018 American League MVP. The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal seemingly confirmed as much. And not only are the Dodgers in the mix for Betts, it sounds as if Red Sox pitcher David Price is on the table. Rosenthal indicated a deal involving Price is “one of many” scenarios in play.
And yes, as Andy reports, a Betts-Price scenario is one of many in play… https://t.co/7kFfDBLlCW
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) January 30, 2020
MLB Network’s Jon Heyman also weighed in with a few tidbits.
Hearing Dodgers remain strongly in mix for Mookie. 1. They have great prospects. 2. Unlike SD they are a clear WS contender. 3. Baseball prez Andrew Friedman worked with new Red Sox GM Bloom 10 plus yrs in Tampa. 4. AF also knows David Price from Tampa. 5. Again, great prospects.
— Jon Heyman (@JonHeyman) January 30, 2020
ESPN’s Buster Olney added some context as it pertains to the Dodgers’ payroll situation.
Worth repeating, as LAD talk with BOS about a possible megadeal: The most significant $ obligation they have in baseball ops is likely to Andrew Friedman, who just signed his new deal. The most they owe any individual player is Kershaw ($46m). Tons of payroll flexibility.
— Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN) January 30, 2020
OK, so if we’re to believe all these reports from the best reporters in baseball, then it sure feels like this could happen. Olney even replied to someone asking him the likelihood of a Betts deal on a scale from one to 10, and he put it at an 8.5. If that’s the case, the big question then becomes what the Red Sox would get back in a deal, and that’s probably pretty complicated, especially if we don’t know whether Price and his contract would be involved, too.
The Dodgers do have one of the best farm systems in baseball, and as Olney noted, plenty of money to make a deal. Top Dodgers prospect Gavin Lux and pitching prospect Dustin May probably aren’t on the table, per the report from The Athletic. However, there’s still plenty of ammo to get a deal done.
“But their organization (the Dodgers) features a plethora of other options — from big-league assets like Enrique Hernández and Chris Taylor to up-and-coming performers like outfielder Alex Verdugo and pitcher Tony Gonsolin to farmhands like catching prospect Keibert Ruiz or pitching prospect Josiah Gray — from which (Chaim) Bloom could build a reasonable package for Betts,” McCullough wrote.
Again, that all could change depending on whether Price is involved in the deal, and McCullough also noted the Dodgers are unlikely to be willing to take on all of Price’s contract. The left-hander still has three years and a total of $96 million left on his deal.
Thumbnail photo via David Butler II/USA TODAY Sports Images