It might seem a little strange that while the Boston Red Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers and Minnesota Twins reportedly agreed to a trade Tuesday night, it’s now Thursday and the deal has yet to be made official.
It turns out there’s a very good reason for why that’s the case.
As part of the trade that would send Mookie Betts and David Price to the Dodgers, the Red Sox were to receiver two young players in return: Dodgers outfielder Alex Verdugo and Twins pitcher Brusdar Graterol. According to multiple reports early Thursday morning, however, the Red Sox saw something in Graterol’s medical reports that raised some flags.
Both The Athletic and ESPN.com reported there are concerns about the 21-year-old’s arm. According to The Athletic, the Red Sox reviewed the medicals and consider Graterol more of a reliever than a starter because of his arm issues.
Graterol underwent Tommy John surgery in 2015 and dealt with shoulder problems in 2019.
That hold-up could really complicate things among the three teams. The Red Sox, according to the reports, hope to amend the deal either by changing the players involved or altering the amount of money sent to the Dodgers to cover some of the costs of Price’s contract. The Athletic reported it’s unclear whether the added pieces would come from the Dodgers or Twins. ESPN’s Jeff Passan even speculated the Red Sox and Dodgers could instead make it a two-team deal or find a different team to facilitate a three-team deal.
“The likelihood of the trade of Betts to the Dodgers blowing up altogether, sources said, is slim, as medical-related impasses are typically worked around,” ESPN’s Jeff Passan wrote.
Perhaps stating the obvious, The Athletic cited a source saying the deal had “a lot of moving parts,” which was true even before the possibility of the deal being altered.
As it stood, the Twins were in line to acquire Dodgers pitcher Kenta Maeda to complete the deal.