Final Trade Breakdowns From a Wild MLB Weekend

Final Trade Breakdowns From a Wild MLB Weekend

by February 10, 2020 0 comments

There were many moving parts in the three-team megadeal between the Boston Red Sox, Minnesota Twins, and Los Angeles Dodgers over the last week, but the deal was completed Sunday night.

Originally, the Dodgers were in line to trade Alex Verdugo to the Red Sox and Kenta Maeda to the Twins, the Red Sox would trade David Price and Mookie Betts to the Dodgers, and the Twins would trade Brusdar Graterol to the Red Sox. Now all the aforementioned players have been included in the final deal, with some more added as well.

The Dodgers were also in line to send Joc Pederson and Ross Stripling to the Los Angeles Angels in return for infielder Luis Rengifo and two mid-level prospects. But these deals were up in the air until just days ago because of major medical complications.

The main reason the original deal with the Dodgers, Twins, and Red Sox fell through is reportedly 21-year-old righty Brusdar Graterol. His medicals reportedly had many red flags, which made Boston reluctant to accept him.

During the 72 hours of limbo, Angels owner Arte Moreno reportedly became agitated about how long the Dodgers were taking and he demanded that GM Billy Eppler call off the Pederson deal. The Dodgers and Red Sox were left to restructure the deal after the Twins decided that they wouldn’t meet Boston’s demands of an extra top-10 prospect.

The Dodgers and Sox successfully were able to change the deal parameters and still include the Twins. The Dodgers sent lefty-hitting outfielder Alex Verdugo along with 21-year-old infield prospect Jeter Downs and catching prospect Connor Wong to Boston in exchange for former MVP outfielder Mookie Betts, and lefty David Price. The Red Sox also sent along $48 million to help cover the two large contracts.

Verdugo is a fast centerfielder who projects as an above-average corner outfielder in the future with some great power and speed potential. He also has a good arm that has neared 100 MPH on throws. Downs is a middle infielder who projects better long-term at second base, with a nice power-speed combo which saw him have north of 20 homers and 20 stolen bags this past season between High-A and Double-A. Connor Wong is projected as a backup catcher with okay defense and average power.

The Red Sox didn’t do nearly as bad as they would’ve in the original trade. Downs essentially replaces Graterol and has fewer injury concerns.

The Dodgers then cleared their part of the deal with the Twins to get rid of Maeda. The Dodgers acquired Graterol, minor league OF Luke Raley and the 67th pick in the 2020 first-year player draft from the Twins in exchange for right-hander Kenta Maeda, minor-league C Jaír Camargo, and cash considerations.

Graterol was potentially an absolute steal for Maeda and to get a low-risk, high-reward outfielder like Raley in turn just makes the deal that much more impressive for Andrew Friedman. Graterol has an above-average arm and the highest-rated sinker possible by MLB Pipeline. He also posses an above-average slider and a decent changeup to round out his repertoire.

Graterol, 21, came up through the minors as a starter but due to injuries, he debuted this past season as a reliever and really took off in that role. It remains to be seen what he ultimately turns into, but he already has a chance to be of greater value than Maeda. The Dodgers also gave up catcher Camargo who is a lower-level catcher. Maeda has a career 3.87 ERA with a 47-35 record. He is a good get for the win-now Twins.

There is no doubt that the Dodgers won this string of events. The fact that the Dodgers were able to get Betts and Price for a relatively low price and the fact that they absolutely stole Graterol from the Twins makes this deal so intriguing. The Dodgers, meanwhile, will have the enviable task of managing a surplus of pitching and outfield talent after the trade with the Angels fell through.

Former Sports Reporter & Journalist For PrimeTime Sports Talk And Other USA Today Networks

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