On Saturday evening, I replied to Jared Carrabis’ Twitter post that said the Red Sox won the Mookie Betts and David Price trade after Price opted out of the 2020 season due to COVID-19.
My reply said that they already won the trade, and it became clear that Sox fans still don’t realize why Chaim Bloom traded him along with David Price for Alex Verdugo, Jeter Downs, and Connor Wong.
“Mookie is better than any of those players ever will be. He shouldn’t have been traded.” said one Twitter user. Another said, “The odds of all three of their WAR equaling Mookie’s is low.”
These were just two examples of the replies I received and it’s still mind-boggling why other Red Sox fans can’t understand why Bloom made this decision.
I wrote about it after the initial trade went through, but let me go through the basics yet again:
- The Red Sox wanted to lower the payroll, so attaching Price’s big contract along with Mookie’s big one year deal really helped in that sense.
- They knew they wouldn’t be able to sign Betts before free agency so they wanted to get something back for him other than just a compensation pick.
As I mentioned at the top, once the trade happened I thought that Boston won the trade, and maybe it was because they already had a World Series in 2018 to ease the pain of losing a great player like Betts.
But Chaim Bloom’s job is to make unemotional decisions in an effort to put the club in the best position possible to win for a long period of time.
And that’s exactly what he did here.
Although none of us knew it at the time, but he turned 60 games of Betts and two years of Price into five years of Verdugo (the starting right fielder), six years of Downs (the future starting second basemen), and six years of Wong (who should be a nice utility piece).
You don’t need me to tell you that Betts was a great player and he would have been a great player this season in Boston, but considering that they were looking up at the Rays and the Yankees anyway in the AL East before the trade, it was the right time to pull the trigger to ensure that Boston would be set up to contend for many years to come.
Red Sox fans, including myself, might not like seeing Mookie Betts in another uniform this year, but I am sure they will be happy when the team is in a position to consistently, especially with the team in the Bronx having Gerrit Cole leading the rotation.
You can follow Ben on Twitter @benfaddenmlb for more on the Red Sox and news around baseball.
(Photo: Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)