The Red Sox have completed a trade that will send Yoan Moncada and Michael Kopech to the White Sox in exchange for Chris Sale. Two other prospects are included in the deal according to Ken Rosenthal.
Update: The other two are Luis Alexander Basabe and Victor Diaz. The better Basabe brother hurts a bit to lose, but was still stuck in search of a breakout year. Victor Diaz is a low-level relief prospect who shouldn’t really tip the scales in a deal like this.
Here’s your Dave Dombrowski blockbuster. The Red Sox have managed to land one of the American League’s best pitchers while giving up no major league talent in the process. Obviously Yoan Moncada is a huge loss. Obviously Michael Kopech has excellent upside. Those other two prospects could be huge.
There’s also a lot to wonder about just how much better Chris Sale actually makes this team. He’s an exceptional pitcher, and will be Boston’s for the next three years (at a fairly reasonable price), but they were already a good team with a good rotation.
That being said, if the Red Sox were going to go all-in on 2017, they have at least done a good job of that. Andrew Benintendi, Jackie Bradley Jr., and Eduardo Rodriguez are not in the deal. Even Blake Swihart remains. Moncada may have eventually taken over third base before the season was over, and Michael Kopech had an outside shot to play a bullpen role by the end of the year. But as far as 2017 were concerned, they were not nearly so likely to make the difference as Sale is.
There’s a lot to be said about this, obviously. All of which will be said. For now, though, Chris Sale is on the Red Sox. Somehow.