Report: Red Sox, Dodgers, Twins agree on reworked swap involving Mookie Betts

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ESPN’s Jeff Passan reports that the Red Sox, Dodgers, and Twins have come to an agreement on a reworked trade involving outfielder Mookie Betts. Per MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand, the Dodgers will get Betts, starter David Price, and cash from the Red Sox. The Red Sox will receive outfielder Alex Verdugo, infield prospect Jeter Downs, and catching prospect Connor Wong from the Dodgers. As usual, the trade is still pending review of the involved players’ medicals, but the players have all been notified of the trade. The Twins will receive starter Kenta Maeda, a lower level minor league player, and $10 million in exchange from the Dodgers for reliever Brusdar Graterol, outfielder Luke Raley, and the No. 67 pick in the 2020 draft.

The first iteration of the three-team trade fell apart due to concerns over Twins reliever Brusdar Graterol’s medicals. In the end, though, every team got what they wanted. The Red Sox cleared a significant amount of salary off of their payroll, getting under the $208 million competitive balance tax threshold. The Dodgers, silent for much of the offseason, made a big upgrade to the roster, adding one of the best players in the game in Betts and a solid starter in Price. The Twins bolstered the rotation yet again with Maeda. He’ll join a rotation that includes newcomers Rich Hill and Homer Bailey as well as mainstays José Berríos and Jake Odorizzi.

Downs is rated as the Dodgers’ No. 5 prospect, according to MLB Pipeline. Wong came in at No. 28. Graterol ranked No. 3 in the Twins’ system.

Chris Sale to start the season in the injured list

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Red Sox manager Ron Roenicke said this morning that Chris Sale won’t be ready for the start of the season. He’ll begin the year on the injured list.

The reason is not, Roenicke says, his rehabbed elbow directly. It’s that he’s been sidelined with pneumonia and is thus a couple of weeks behind in his preparation. Roenicke, as paraphrased by Julian McWilliams of the Boston Globe, said that it was “unfair” to give sale “just four starts” this spring.

Which, as Rotoworld’s Matthew Pouliot observes, is kind of strange because Sale’s last four spring trainings have consisted of three, five, four and two starts, respectively, yet he has been deemed ready to go each year. Pouliot also notes that, if he was truly only a couple of weeks behind, as Roenicke says, he’d be ramped up to about four innings per outing or so by the time the bell rings as opposed to six, maybe, and that that’s not an unusual level of stamina for a starter in this day and age given the changes in bullpen usage. Ideal for Sale? Maybe not, but not the sort of thing one would expect to result in an IL stint to start the year.

An overabundance of caution informed by the fact that, well, the Red Sox aren’t intending to compete this year? A change in philosophy under the Red Sox’ interim new manager? Or is there something going on with Sale’s health at the moment?