Oh my god. Chris Sale is finally a member of the Boston Red Sox. I didn’t think that this day would ever come nor did I think that that the Red Sox would win the trade. December 6th marks the day that Dave Dombrowski did what Dave Dombrowski has always done. He addressed two of the team's needs (a solid bullpen arm in Tyler Thornburg and another front of the rotation arm in Chris Sale), and in exchange he took a big bite out of our farm system.
We can all probably agree that the Thornburg trade was fair and at this point seems insignificant. Thornburg is just the kind of bullpen arm the Sox needed and Travis Shaw deserves the opportunity to go out and fight for every day at bats somewhere where he can actually get them. Dubon was pretty good, but he was blocked by Bogaerts at the Major League level. So it’s whatever. Now, let’s dive into how we feel about the blockbuster trade of the year.
The Chicago White Sox have traded Chris Sale to the Boston Red Sox in exchange for baseball's top prospect Yoan Moncada, flamethrower Michael Kopech, Luis Basabe, and Victor Diaz. Obviously my first reaction was, “HOLY SHIT WE GOT CHRIS SALE!” Followed by, “Oh my god.. We lost Moncada AND Kopech.” Then finally, “If Chris Sale takes those scissors anywhere near Benny’s hair I’m going to end him!” But after giving it some time and being able to fully digest the trade, I think the Red Sox won.
A lot of you are probably pissed when you realize that we traded 6 years of Moncada and 6 years of Kopech for 3 years of Chris Sale. However, here’s how you have to look at it. We traded 6 years of Moncada and 6 years of Kopech for 3 years of a Sale-Price-Porcello-Rodriguez rotation. Take a second and think about that. We have 3 potential Cy Young candidates followed by E-Rod, who has shown the upside of a solid number 2 starter. Of course we have to acknowledge what we lost. For all we know, we just traded Mike Trout and Noah Syndergaard for a guy who can’t handle the pressure of the Boston market. But at this point, it’s worth the risk.
The Red Sox made both of these moves today without touching the big league roster outside of Travis Shaw. That’s the guys in the front office acknowledging that they have a 2-3 year period until their young core could dissolve, and they need to take advantage of it. Moncada proved in September that he wasn’t Major League ready and Kopech won’t be up until at least 2018. Therefore, you have to acknowledge that the Red Sox needed to make these moves in order to put themselves in the best position to win in 2017, 2018, and 2019. We must also acknowledge that by the time 2019 comes around, this team could easily go to shit, but we’ll let Dave Dombrowski figure that out when the time comes. Right now we have to stay focused on the present, because it’s time to win now.
As of December 6th, 2016, the Red Sox acquired Chris Sale and Tyler Thornburg in exchange for Travis Shaw, Yoan Moncada, Michael Kopech, Luis Basabe, Victor Diaz, Mauricio Dubon, and Josh Pennington. In simpler terms, the Red Sox acquired 2 impact major leaguers in exchange for a Major League role player, and 6 prospects. This is exactly what I love and hate about Dave Dombrowski. If there’s a need, he will fill it with the best available option. Unfortunately, his solution to these problems often means emptying the farm system of every half decent prospect. At this point in time, the only Red Sox minor leaguers I can name are Jason Groome, Rafael Devers, Rusney Castillo, and Allen Craig. That’s a little scary. But look on the bright side, in 2017 we get to watch Chris Sale, David Price, Rick Porcello, and Eduardo Rodriguez all pitch in front of a team constructed of solid veterans and our young studs that we call the Killer B’s (Betts, Bogaerts, Bradley, Benintendi).
I’m still a little worried about the lack of offensive focus Dombrowski has shown this offseason. If the impossible happens and the Sox sign Encarnacion, then they are a lock to make the World Series. But even if they can just bring in a Mike Napoli or Pedro Alvarez to rotate at 1B/DH with Hanley, then I think that they still deserve to be seen as the favorites to win the American League pennant. Let’s just look at it one more time:
This also means we can use Steven Wright and/or Drew Pomeranz as trade bait to acquire some offense. God, it’s a great day to be a Sox fan.