We may have witnessed the biggest trade in MLB history last night.
The Boston Red Sox, looking to shake up their team, are close to sending Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford, and Nick Punto to the Los Angeles Dodgers for James Loney, Ivan De Jesus, Allen Webster, Jerry Sands, and Rubby De La Rosa. The Red Sox would only have to pay $12M of the remaining $270M left on the four players' exisisting contracts.
The Dodgers claimed both Adrian Gonzalez and Josh Beckett off of waivers on Friday. According to many sources, the two teams had already had dialogue about some players even before the waiver claims were announced. Carl Crawford and Nick Punto passed through waivers and were free to be traded to any team. Rubby De La Rosa will have to be traded as a player to be named later, since the Toronto Blue Jays claimed him on waivers.
The Dodgers will now have to pay the majority of the remaining deals for Gonzalez, Beckett, Crawford, and Punto. Gonzalez has six years $127M remaining on his deal after this season, Crawford is owed six years $122M, Beckett is under contract for two years $31.5M, and Nick Punto has a one year $1.5M remaining on his contract.
Josh Beckett will jump into the rotation right away, giving the Dodgers another veteran starter to go along with Clayton Kershaw, Chad Billinsley, Chris Capuano, Aaron Harang, and Joe Blanton.
Adrian Gonzalez can be penciled into the lineup next to Matt Kemp, giving the Dodgers a dangerous middle of the order.
Nick Punto will most likely become a defensive upgrade off the bench. The Dodgers just lost super utility, Jerry Hairston Jr. for the season a few days ago.
Carl Crawford just received Tommy John surgery and will miss the remainder of the season. He will be back next year to give the Dodgers an impressive outfield of Crawford, Kemp, and Either. This trade all but signals that the Dodgers will let Shane Victorino walk in the offseason.
The Los Angeles Dodgers strike again, continuing their aggressive approach under their new ownership group. They have already traded for Hanley Ramirez, Shane Victorino, Joe Blanton, Randy Choate, and Brandon League this season, showing that they are going to do whatever it takes to win.
The Dodgers extended superstar outfielder Matt Kemp to an 8 year $160M extension in November. They also gave all-star Andre Either an extension, giving him a 5 year $85M deal mid-season. What is yet to be seen is how much more money the Dodgers can spend in the winter.
This trade is almost a complete salary dump for the Red Sox. Josh Beckett and Carl Crawford's contract were regarded as two of the worst in baseball. By trading away these contracts, the Red Sox now have salary cap flexibility. Some experts speculate that some of the saved money can go to David Ortiz, who is a free agent after the season.
I personally think the Red Sox got the better end by this deal ridding two atrocious contracts. Yes, they had to give up one of the better players in the game in Adrian Gonzalez to do it, but if he wasn't included, you have to wonder if the Dodgers would have made a trade in the first place.
If I was Ben Cherington I probably would have just dumped Josh Beckett's contract and kept Gonzalez.
Who do you think made out better in this deal?