Betts to Dodgers in blockbuster deal


Mookie Betts of the Boston Red Sox in a game at Fenway Park in Boston. Betts was acquired by the Los Angeles Dodgers (along with David Price) in a trade on Feb. 10, 2020.

Brady Wilson, Staff Writer

Nearly a week after it was reported, the Boston Red Sox officially traded outfielder Mookie Betts and LHP David Price to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday. The Dodgers are sending three prospects in return: outfielder Alex Verdugo, shortstop Jeter Downs, and catcher Connor Wong.

In a separate trade, the Dodgers sent Kenta Maeda to the Twins for RHP Brusdar Graterol. Other pieces are believed to be involved.

The original three-team trade proposal would have sent Graterol and Verdugo to Boston, but the Red Sox were concerned with Graterol’s medicals¬†and sought additional compensation, causing the delay and reworked deal.

With Spring Training beginning this week, the teams worked to help Betts and Price keep a regular schedule. It also should be noted that the MLBPA ripped the teams for the weeklong delay.

After following the 2018 World Series title with a disappointing 2019 campaign, Boston fired GM Dave Dombrowski. His replacement, Chaim Bloom, set his sights on cutting payroll, and dealing Price and Betts accomplishes that. In their stead, Verdugo brings a solid stat line for much less cost and Wong bolsters Boston’s farm system, but Downs is currently blocked at the major league level by Xander Bogaerts.

On the flip side, the Dodgers, already the favorite to win the NL West and represent the National League in the World Series, only strengthen their already strong lineup. However, Betts will be a free agent at the end of the season, and could command $400 million in a new deal.

Price, an instrumental player for the 2018 championship team, goes to Los Angeles at half-cost, with Boston eating $48 million of his $96 million contract.

The Twins are ready to contend now – Nelson Cruz and Josh Donaldson aren’t getting younger – and Maeda will help them immediately as they seek to move past the ALDS for the first time since 2002.