The A's likely were big fans of the original trade that would have sent outfielder Mookie Betts and pitcher David Price from the Boston Red Sox to the Los Angeles Dodgers. They're likely even bigger fans of the adjusted trade that reportedly was agreed to Sunday.
The main structure of the trade remains unchanged, according to ESPN's Jeff Passan. Betts and Price are still going to the Dodgers, while outfield prospect Alex Verdugo is the main piece going back to the Red Sox.
BREAKING: The trade that will send Mookie Betts to the Los Angeles Dodgers has been agreed upon, sources tell ESPN. Outfielder Alex Verdugo and shortstop Jeter Downs are among those who will go to the Boston Red Sox.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 9, 2020
Catching prospect Connor Wong is headed to the Boston Red Sox alongside outfielder Alex Verdugo and shortstop Jeter Downs in the trade that will send outfielder Mookie Betts, starter David Price and cash to the Los Angeles Dodgers, sources tell ESPN. Players have been notified.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) February 9, 2020
Since 2015, Betts' first full season in the majors, these are his finishes in the AL MVP voting: 19th, second, sixth, first and, most recently, eighth. Him departing the league for the NL can't be seen as anything other than a major positive for Oakland.
But hold on. It gets better.
As part of the original trade, the Dodgers had also reportedly agreed to trade outfielder Joc Pederson to the Los Angeles Angels in a salary dump. But for whatever reason, The Athletic's Ken Rosenthal reported Sunday that the trade between the Dodgers and Angels is now off, citing sources.
Not entirely clear why #Dodgers-#Angels trade will not happen. Evidently hinged on three-team trade going down in original form. One source: LAD chose different path after after #RedSox-#MNTwins could not agree on Graterol. Another: LAA’s Moreno grew impatient and pulled deal.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 10, 2020
Pederson is coming off a season in which he slashed .249/.339/.538 and hit a career-high 36 home runs to go with 74 RBI. That's a power bat that would have likely played a prominent role for a divisional rival, who now ... won't. It's always possible the two Los Angeles teams could come back to the bargaining table, but at least for the time being, it appears the A's lucked out.
Unless you're worried about a few good prospects on a team that just agreed to trade away one of the best baseball players on the planet, it's difficult not to view the results of Betts trade as a tremendous development for Oakland.