Stunning news came out of the Winter Meetings Tuesday afternoon.
Dave Dombrowksi has done it again.
This time, it wasn’t Miguel Cabrera, Pudge Rodgriguez, Max Scherzer, David Price, or Craig Kimbrel, it was White Sox left-hander and 5-time All-Star Chris Sale.
In exchange for Chris Sale, the White Sox received the #1 overall prospect in the MLB, Yoan Moncada, the #30 overall prospect Michael Kopech, as well as two others. The Red Sox will pick all of Chris Sale’s remaining salary as well as Moncada’s.
Chris Sale will join a rotation that is headline by Cy Young winners David Price and Rick Porcello in a group that also includes Eduardo Rodriguez, 2016 All-Star Drew Pomeranz, and 2016 All-Star knuckleballer Steven Wright. They also have Clay Buccholz in the mix as well. It’s not out of the realm of possibility that they could trade someone like Pomeranz to free up the jam.
Dombrowski managed to keep Benintendi as well as Betts, who were reportedly in the asking price at the Trade Deadline.
Moncada is expected to play second base for the White Sox and pair up with top prospect Tim Anderson for their double play duo for years. Brett Lawrie is currently the starter at 2B, so they could trade him or move him to 3B if they trade Todd Frazier.
It’s expected that since the White Sox have traded their best player in Sale that they won’t stop there. Frazier, Robertson, Abreu, Quintana, Eaton, Cabrera, and Lawrie could all be on the move this winter.
With Moncada out of the picture as a possible 3B option (as well as Travis Shaw), the Red Sox are putting all their hopes on Pablo Sandoval being the guy at the hot corner. They still have their #3 prospect Rafael Devers who plays third base, but he isn’t expected to contribute until 2018 at the earliest.
The Nationals were the leaders on Sale late last night, as it was reported they had been talking all day and made substantial progress. Reports were that the deal was to include 2 of the top 10 prospects in all of baseball, Lucas Giolito and Victor Robles. All that was to be decided was the third piece in the deal. This is the second time this offseason it appeared that the Nats were close to a blockbuster deal (other being Andrew McCutchen). It’s possible that the Nats shift their focus back onto McCutchen now that Sale is heading to Beantown.
This was the biggest trade of the offseason, so far. So it’ll take some time analyzing all the bits and pieces to another Dombrowksi blockbuster. One thing is for sure: the Red Sox are going for it and have emerged as one of the AL favorites.