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Should, Could and Would the Red Sox Trade Mookie Betts?

With the regression of Boston Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts, could he find himself in a new uniform at the start of the 2018 season?

Photo Credit: Jared Wickerham/Getty Images North America

Mookie Betts was an All-Star and also voted the American League MVP runner-up in 2016. But times have certainly changed drastically for this young right-fielder, and for the worse.

During last season’s high-profile campaign, Betts slashed a .318 batting average with 31 home runs, earning himself a prestigious Silver Slugging award for his position. His hard work in the outfield did not go unnoticed either as he found himself sitting high and pretty with a solid .997 fielding percentage over 361 defensive chances. Only one error was committed all season (July 4 vs. Texas). Those numbers were indeed good enough for him to earn a Gold Glove at his position.

Betts was an absolute force in 2016, there is no denying it. 

With that being said, he has not seen nearly as much success as he did last year. This leads to a few questions. Was he a fluke? Also, could he be traded for someone equally as good, or even better, such as Trey Mancini of the Baltimore Orioles?

Thus far during the season, Betts has seen some regression in his overall numbers.

His batting average has seen a significant drop-off during his 2017 campaign. That number has seen a decline of .55 points down to a mediocre .263.

The decline in play hasn’t been just him alone, it’s also the case for Xander Bogaerts, Hanley Ramirez and Brock Holt.

Although his general all around average is not great, some of his clutch hitting statistics are truly things of beauty.

With Boston trailing in games, Betts has rallied up with a .298 average in 181 at-bats.

But wait, it gets better than that.

With two outs and runners in scoring position, Betts is batting a solid .385 and getting on base .484 percent of the time. That averages out to a .965 OPS.

Now let’s do a brief comparison of the statistics of the 25-year-old rookie, Trey Mancini. In 120 games, Mancini has been batting about .29 points higher than Betts, but is getting on base at just about the same percentage.

Previously noted were Betts’ numbers in the two-out with RISP spot, so it wouldn’t be fair to avoid Mancini’s. His numbers in that spot are near identical, until you reach the OPS category. Trey is totaling a 1.290 OPS, .325 points higher than Betts. This is due to his high velocity of doubles and home runs in that situation (four and four).

A trade between the two ball clubs could well become a reality as both players are only currently signed through the end of this year. Mancini is a utility outfielder, and a first baseman, so he could easily fill the role of Betts, and potentially play the infield if he ever needed to do such.

Let’s not forget, Betts, who is making $950,000, is elejiable for salary arbitration next this offseason and is not going to be a happy camper until he gets his long-term deal. Betts and the Red Sox were talking contract extention in January, but he wanted to take it year by year. He’s going to demand a lot, and there is no doubt he believes he’s worth more than the Red Sox think at this point. His value is not going up, that’s for sure.

 

14 Comments on Should, Could and Would the Red Sox Trade Mookie Betts?

  1. Hattie Duford // September 3, 2017 at 11:38 am // Reply

    NO!!!!

  2. I think Betts hit well as leadoff hitter instead of being moved down batting 3rd or 4th in the lineup. Farrell needs to do better job figuring out which batting order works for Betts. When he is at bat with runners in scoring position – pitch selections are different plus Betts is under a lot of pressure.

    If Betts returns to leadoff spot – believe me he will blossom….

    Farrell needs to stop moving batters around which includes JBJ – he was on fire batting 9th in the lineup which helped Betts’ RBI total.

    It is time to leave Betts as leadoff hitter and JBJ in bottom of the order and if it did not work then Farrell has to go….

  3. No. As someone posted Ferrell needs to put Betts back in leadoff. Same mistake has been made with JBJ

  4. The notion to trade Mookie Betts because his second full season in the majors has not been as extraordinarily productive as his first…..is beyond ridiculous. The implication is that unless a young talented player produces better numbers in each successive year throughout his career, he’s then assumed to be in a downward spiral. This is baseball, a game that has more nuanced influences that affect performance than any other professional sport. C’mon man!?!

  5. NO, NO and NO!

  6. Richard Blanc // September 3, 2017 at 7:45 pm // Reply

    You want to trade someone I say trade Bogarts. His performance has been poor and poorer. Strikes out or hits into DP’s when we need hits. Nunez had proven he can play SS. Bogarts has to many costly errors on the team. Home runs by Bogarts have been much fewer than last season.
    This is my opinion does anyone agree with me.

  7. No you would be shooting yourself in the foot,you never learn letting Lester go was a mistake and manny more you create your own troubles😡

  8. Why is his number down this year? That’s easy, there is no David Ortiz in the line up, plain and simple. Ortiz made everyone in the line up a better hitter.

    • Sean McGinness // September 3, 2017 at 10:28 pm // Reply

      If everyone needed Ortiz, does that mean they were never really that good to begin with if they relied someones presence?

  9. Are you kidding? I say no to trading any of the young Killer Bees, except maybe Jackie Bradley, if he was to get Stanton back in a package.

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