BOSTON (CBS) — The Red Sox are going to try their darnedest to trim payroll this offseason, and that likely includes trading Mookie Betts. As difficult as it is to picture the team trading their best star, moving him should net Boston a pretty package of prospects, along with trimming nearly $30 million off the books.
At least, we though that trading Betts would net Boston a bounty of prospects. According to MLB Network’s Jon Heyman, the Red Sox will gauge the market for Betts, but there is now “great skepticism” that other teams will be willing to give up a collection of top prospects for a potential one-year rental.
Betts is under team control for one more season and is expected to net a $28 million payday in arbitration. He’s made it clear that he wants to test the free agent waters in 2021, which will not help Boston’s cause for getting their best bang for their buck on Betts.
It’s still early in the winter, so this could be potential Betts suitors posturing in hopes of lowering Boston’s asking price. But the Red Sox are going to have to get something great to sell their fan base on a Betts trade, so they’re going to want players that will help revamp their barren farm system, and potentially help with the big league team in the near future.
Whatever may happen, it’s clear that Betts trade rumors are going to dominate this offseason, which should make for an interesting first winter on the job for new Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Bloom. With the GM meetings getting underway in Arizona, the Betts hot stove should start heating up even more over the next week.